Last updated 8/16/2021 at 8:00 AM
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What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019) is a respiratory virus first detected in December of 2019. As we continue to see community spread of the virus throughout the state, residents and businesses should review standard sanitary protocols to minimize transmission of contagious conditions generally.
When can I be vaccinated?
Please check out our VaccinatePVD.com website for up-to-date information about vaccine clinics being administered in Providence.
How many cases does Providence have?
The Rhode Island Department of Health maintains and updates a data tracker to provide up-to-date information about the number of people tested and the number of people with positive tests in Rhode Island cities and towns, including Providence.
What can I do to protect myself and our community?
- Wear a Mask
- Wash your hands
- Practice Social Distancing (6 feet)
- Cover your cough
- Stay home
- Disinfect surfaces
- Limit social gatherings whenever possible
What if I feel sick and need to be tested?
Have COVID-19 symptoms? Reach out below and get tested.
People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness.
These symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus:
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Repeated shaking with chills
- Muscle pain
- Sore throat
- New loss of taste or smell
Have COVID-19 symptoms? Get tested!
Are there volunteer opportunities available during COVID-19?
Providence Emergency Management (PEMA) is always looking to expand their volunteer base.
In order to become a PEMA Volunteer:
- The first step in becoming a PEMA volunteer of any kind is to register here: https://www.providenceri.gov/pema/volunteer/
- Once potential volunteers have registered on the site, PEMA will contact them directly.
- There are two processes: one process, streamlines the process for rapid approval and one where there’s a true background check (application/ screening/ DOH)
- Once approved, PEMA will send emails with a variety of volunteer opportunities regularly that include opportunities to build resiliency and prepare individuals and their communities for emergencies.
- Volunteers are needed to support food pantries and vaccine clinics.
PEMA is also calling all MDs, RNs, DOs, NPs or with an active licensed to administer vaccines to sign up to assist with administering vaccines at a POD.
What is the City of Providence doing?
We have worked to align citywide guidance with the latest State guidelines on mitigating the spread of COVID-19 upon entering phases of the statewide reopening plans.
Events and entertainment shall comply with all guidelines and restrictions outlined by the State of Rhode Island and by the City of Providence permitting process.
What about Providence Public Schools?
If you are experiencing an issue with distance learning setup or have a school-related need, The Providence Public School Department has a parent hotline (401) 456-0686 to answer all of your questions Monday-Friday 8:00 AM-4:00 PM or visit the Providence Public School District distance learning landing page for more information.
Will the City’s public facilities and buildings remain open?
Our team has worked to align citywide guidance with the latest State guidelines on mitigating the spread of COVID-19. Effective Tuesday, June 1, City buildings will be open to the public for in-person city services Monday-Friday, from 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM, with the exception of the North Burial Ground office which is open to the public in a limited capacity (1 guest at a time) from 8:00 AM-4:00. Each department may be staffed up to 100% occupancy.
Upon arrival to city buildings, all visitors will be asked for their name to aid in contact tracing. Face masks will be required at all times for staff as well as visitors and hand sanitizer will be available throughout the building. Social distancing measures such as traffic flow indicators and plexiglass barriers have been put in place, and separate entrances and exits have been identified at each building, as informed by recommended best practices. Various online city services are available to constituents who need to limit person-to-person contact.
Residents and businesses can call to connect by dialing 3-1-1 or by downloading the app for smartphones or visiting the website.
What actions are being taken to help employees who are out of work?
We are working with the State to provide relief to residents who are out of work and businesses who are closed. The Department of Labor and Training has increased the flexibility and manageability of the Temporary Disability Insurance (TDI) and the Unemployment Insurance, including waiving the seven-day minimum amount of time and previously required medical certification. Affected businesses with questions on Unemployment Insurance, Paid Sick and Safe Leave, or other work-related programs should contact the DLT by emailing or calling (401) 462-2020.
Employees can view resources from the Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training here.
What actions are being taken to help small businesses?
In response to the impacts of COVID-19 on the Providence small business community, the Providence Business Loan Fund has announced temporary modifications to the Fund to provide access to capital for eligible small businesses and immediate relief for existing borrowers. More resources are available here.
Businesses are also encouraged to call 521-HELP or visit Commerce Rhode Island’s COVID-19 website for more information on state programs targeted at helping small businesses.
How does this affect my restaurant, night club, or bar?
All indoor settings operating at a square footage capacity should do so in accordance with State guidelines.
Indoor entertainment and live performance regulations will be aligned with the State of Rhode Island guidelines and restrictions. Additionally, events and entertainment shall comply with all guidelines and restrictions outlined by the State of Rhode Island and by the City of Providence permitting process. All guidelines and restrictions outlined by the State of Rhode Island are to be followed without exception.
Can my retail small business remain open?
All businesses, essential and nonessential, may open to the public consistent with guidelines issued per Executive Order of the Governor of the State of Rhode Island.
Business owners are also encouraged to make masks available to their patrons and to visit Commerce RI's COVID-19 website for additional information here.
For general information about COVID-19, you may visit the CDC’s page.
For Rhode Island-specific information visit the Rhode Island Department of Health’s COVID-19 website.
For more information, call to connect to the Mayor’s Center for City Services by dialing 3-1-1, visiting www.PVD311.com, or download the PVD311 mobile app on your smartphone for 24/7 access.
Register to receive CodeRED emergency notifications by phone, email, text, and/or mobile alerts to your mobile device.