Governor of Rhode Island extends pandemic executive order
The governor of Rhode Island extended his executive order to require schools to wear masks and declared a disaster emergency due to a new variant of COVID-19.
Both orders will expire on Saturday. Governor Dan McKee signed an extension to January 8.
McGee reported on Saturday that the state’s first case of the omicron variant of the coronavirus occurred in an adult who had recently travelled abroad.
McKee and state health officials said the man was in his 20s, lived in Providence County, and recently returned from a trip to New York. They completed the primary vaccination series and there is no record of booster injections. Officials are working on contact tracing.
McKee plans to announce a series of actions this week to address the increasing number of COVID-19 cases and ease the pressure on the hospital system, while keeping schools open for face-to-face learning and preventing economic damage to small businesses. He is currently finalizing the plan.
Since August, the level of transmission in the state has been high. The surge in cases and hospitalizations during the holiday season even hit New England, one of the country’s most vaccinated areas.