RI reports 700 more COVID cases as numbers rise across US

Cars stream into the COVID test site at the RI Convention Center in Providence November 13, 2020. Photo by Steve Klamkin WPRO News 

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island reported more than 700 new cases of the coronavirus on Friday as numbers continue to rise across the nation.

The state’s Department of Health also reported four additional deaths to COVID-19 on Friday to bring the state’s total to 1,254.

Hospitalizations are at their highest level since May, and Gov. Gina Raimondo has warned residents that the worsening crisis could soon overwhelm area hospitals and force officials to enact tougher restrictions on businesses and activities.

Raimondo. a Democrat, blamed the virus’ spread on people flouting the rules and continuing to have indoor gatherings with family and friends.

The 7-day rolling average of the positivity rate in Rhode Island has risen over the past two weeks from 3.02% on Oct. 28 to 4.81% on Nov. 11.

State health departments are calculating positivity rate differently across the country, but for Rhode Island the AP calculates the rate by dividing new cases by test encounters using data from The COVID Tracking Project.