coronavirus in rhode island

7 More Rhode Islanders Die From Coronavirus

There were 3,529 cases of coronavirus in the state on Wednesday

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Seven more people in Rhode Island have died of COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, according to numbers released Wednesday on the state department of health's new data tracker.

The new deaths bring the state's total number to 87.

Six of the seven deaths were nursing home residents, said Dr. Nicole Alexander-Scott, Director of the Rhode Island Department of Health, at a Wednesday news conference with Gov. Gina Raimondo.

There are now 3,529 positive cases of coronavirus in the Ocean State, an increase of 278 from Tuesday.

At the Wednesday news briefing at the State House, Raimondo talked about wanting to reopen the economy but said right now, only time will tell.

"I don't have an answer. It's not going to happen in 1-2 weeks," Raimondo said.

The governor announced the state has partnered with local hotels to offer discounted lodging rates to frontline workers who may need a place to stay during the COVID-19 pandemic. The offer, which is in effect beginning Wednesday, is so workers can feel safe and not worry about bringing the virus home.

Participating hotels with RI Havens can be found here.

The state has also contracted with the Wyndham Hotel in Warwick to help quarantine homeless and housing insecure. The hotel has 200 beds available.

With Rhode Island under a stay-at-home order and about 6,000 residents currently in self-quarantine and unable to leave for essential items, Raimondo said state officials have built a network with Meals-on-Wheels to be able to deliver tens of thousands of meals a day.

The state has also partnered with the University of Rhode Island so their dining staff can deliver meals to area senior centers, Raimondo said.

Speaking to Rhode Islanders who live on the Massachusetts border, the governor said they should "use some good judgment" when it comes to going out to do grocery shopping in the Bay State.

"The less you leave your house, the safer we'll all be," Raimondo said.

Raimondo announced an executive order Tuesday requiring all employees at retail businesses in the state to wear masks. The governor said businesses must provide masks to employees who do not have them and checks will be made by state officials.

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