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Health Department Responding To COVID Outbreak Among Providence College Students

The Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) and Providence College are responding to an outbreak of COVID-19 among off-campus students near the school. Approximately 120 cases have been identified in the last three days. RIDOH is reminding people who live in the area around Providence College (and all Rhode Islanders) to monitor themselves for symptoms of COVID-19. Anyone who develops symptoms should contact their healthcare provider.

Additionally, all people in Rhode Island between 18 and 39 years of age who do not have symptoms of COVID-19 can get tested. People who do not have symptoms and who work in high-contact workplaces, such as bars, restaurants, clubs, gyms, and hair salons and barbershops, are also eligible to be tested. College students in the area who do not attend Providence College and employees of area businesses who regularly interact with Providence College students are strongly encouraged to be tested. (All Providence College students are already being tested.) Testing of asymptomatic people is done at the Rhode Island Convention Center. Appointments are required. To schedule an appointment, go to portal.ri.gov

RIDOH is taking several measures to limit or prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the area. RIDOH is doing thorough case investigations for each case, and is doing aggressive contact tracing. RIDOH is also partnering with Providence College in its work to support students in quarantine and isolation. In addition, RIDOH has been advising the college on broader mitigation steps, such as the implementation of a temporary ‘stay-at-home’ directive for students.