PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The state of Rhode Island saw a shift Thursday in the COVID-19 community levels for all five of its counties.
Providence, Kent, Bristol and Washington counties were reduced from the “high” community level to “medium,” while Newport County went from “medium” to “high.”
The community levels, updated weekly by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), are based on case rates, hospital admissions and hospital capacity.
People in counties with a “high” community level are recommended to wear masks in indoor public settings.
Last week, state health officials told 12 News they expected cases and hospitalizations would start to come down after the recent spike.
The R.I. Department of Health reported 455 new infections on Thursday and four additional COVID-19-related deaths, while hospitalizations declined to 82.
COVID-19 was the primary cause of about a third of hospitalizations over the past four weeks, according to the Health Department’s data, while the disease was a “contributing cause” in roughly 24% of cases and it was not a cause in 42% of hospitalizations.