By Associated Press - Tuesday, February 2, 2021

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - Rhode Island-based pharmacy chain CVS Health will start offering COVID-19 vaccinations to eligible people at more than 300 stores in 11 states starting next week, the company announced Tuesday.

The program that launches Feb. 11 will initially get 250,000 doses through the federal government, and the goal is to expand it when more supply becomes available.

“Our presence in communities across the country makes us an ideal partner for administering vaccines in a safe, convenient, and familiar manner,” CVS President and CEO Karen Lynch said in a statement. “This is particularly true for underserved communities, which have been a focus for us throughout the pandemic.”

More than 90,000 health care professionals including pharmacists, licensed pharmacy technicians, and nurses will participate in the vaccination effort, giving CVS Pharmacy the capacity to eventually administer 20 million to 25 million shots per month.

Four CVS locations in Rhode Island and 18 in Massachusetts will be part of the initial rollout.



The city of Pawtucket on Tuesday announced a new resource to make it easier for residents to find out about coronavirus vaccination opportunities.

The form, in multiple languages, is intended to connect all residents with information on upcoming clinics as it becomes available, according to a statement from the city.

“There has been a strong demand for vaccination and information from our community,” Mayor Donald Grebien said. “The form will make it easier for residents to know that they will be contacted for an opportunity to sign up once vaccines are available.”

The form will serve as a contact list for residents to submit their information and be contacted by the BEAT COVID-19 team when an upcoming clinic they are eligible for is announced by the state Department of Health.

The form does not serve as preregistration for a clinic and residents are still required to register for an individual clinic once they are notified that they qualify. Filling out the form does not guarantee a spot in a vaccination clinic.

Also Tuesday, Coventry announced plans to open its own vaccine clinic. Town officials said starting the week of Feb. 14, the Health Department will allocate 240 doses a week for Coventry residents 75 and older, which will be administered by online appointment only.



The number of patients in Rhode Island’s hospitals with COVID-19 has dropped to its lowest level since Nov. 13, according to state Department of Health numbers released Tuesday.

There were more than 300 people in the hospital with COVID-19 as of Sunday, the latest day for which the information was available.

The department also reported 235 more confirmed cases and 13 coronavirus-related deaths. The state’s death toll is now 2,186.

The latest seven-day average positivity rate in Rhode Island is down to 3.3%. 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.

The seven-day rolling average of daily new cases in Rhode Island has now declined from about 871 on Jan. 18 to 600 as of Monday, according to The Project.

The state has now administered more than 75,500 vaccine first doses, and almost 27,000 second doses.

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