Your Coronavirus Update – Today, Oct. 17, 2020


1.9 million years of life have been lost during the pandemic

President Trump announced that CVS and Walgreen’s have signed an agreement to distribute the vaccine to all nursing homes and group homes and assisted living centers, free of charge. FDA must give approval first and

Pfizer’s chief executive confirmed its vaccine won’t be ready until at least late November

Biden campaign spokespeople say Biden and Harris flew on a plane with people who later tested positive but “did not come into close contact with them”. Harris suspended travel until Sunday, but Biden is still traveling. Late Friday: Third person identified, Harris will now not travel through Monday, but Biden continues.

The State University of New York at Oneonta on Thursday announced the abrupt resignation of its president only weeks after it experienced the most severe coronavirus outbreak of any public university in the state. 700 students were positive – some taken out of their dorms in hazmat suits.

Portugal’s Antonio Costa declared that the country was raising the level of alarm to “state of calamity” to facilitate new measures. From midnight, gatherings in public spaces will also be limited to a maximum of five people, while private celebrations, like weddings, can have a maximum of 50 guests. Colleges and universities will also be forbidden to hold any events that are not strictly academic. The number of police officers to check compliance with all the COVID-19 prevention measures will be boosted and fines will be raised to a maximum of €10,000 ($11,760) for those who break the rules. Costa also urged residents to download the virus-tracking app and wear masks, adding that he will soon present a new law to impose the use of masks in all public spaces. “Let us replace fatigue with the determination that we need to win this marathon, which will only end when there is an effective treatment or a vaccine that ensures community immunization,” he said.

Pfizer Inc. cannot request emergency authorization of its COVID-19 vaccine before the third week of November and Moderna Inc., previously announced the earliest it could seek authorization of its own vaccine would be Nov. 25.

Lowell, MA – In response to a third consecutive week in the “high risk” category on the state’s COVID-19 map, Lowell officials are prohibiting door-to-door trick-or-treating this Halloween and halting all in-person learning in city schools.

The number of Massachusetts cities and towns that are considered at high risk for transmission of the coronavirus grew to 63 from 40 in just one week.

Pres. Trump said he wanted to pass a stimulus deal larger than the $1.8 trillion bill that the White House proposed last week.

Community college enrollment is down, nationally, by over 9.5% – comments are people do not want to pay for not in-person learning.

Most “senior” staff will not be able to go back into the office working with others – until there is a “cure” for the vaccine.

In Boston, there will be no holiday favorite sing-a-longs or visits from Santa Claus at Symphony Hall this year: The beloved Boston Pops Holiday program has been canceled.

Chris Christie speaks out after contracting COVID-19 – he was treated with the Eli Lily antibody – and Remdesivir.


Another player on The Patriots team has tested positive – and practice was canceled for today.  ESPN reported the team had one positive COVID-19 test and was awaiting confirmation on another positive test.

Salem, MA Mayor Kim Driscoll said Friday, “This is not the year to come to Salem.” Starting this weekend, she said the city plans to limit access to the Essex Street pedestrian mall and put up barricades to reduce pedestrian traffic.

BSO (Boston Symphony Orchestra) has canceled performances through spring.

Massachusetts unemployment fell to 9.6% in Sept.

Smithfield HS Track Team now cleared for participation.

Rhode Island College’s men’s soccer, women’s soccer and women’s volleyball teams will not compete against Keene State and Plymouth State in a series of exhibition games on Saturday because of positive COVID-19 tests recorded for two Plymouth State athletes this week.

Town of Wrentham urges residents to remain vigilant against spread of COVID-19, following rise to yellow “Medium Risk” status

Care New England has told its staff to “please discard any Makrite respirator that you are currently using, and any that you may have set aside for future use” as faulty masks were received.

UNAP is confirming that management of hospitals are getting bonuses for meeting goals in the pandemic – they are advocating for hazard pay for their front line workers.

Portsmouth, RI restaurant owners are pushing to extend outdoor dining through the winter.

Latest RI businesses to face coronavirus regulation enforcements:

Underground Culture Smoke Shop4 Main Rd.,
Compliance Order10/14/2020
Watch Hill Outfitters157 Main St.,
Compliance Order10/14/2020
Beve Lounge345 Atwells Ave.,
Compliance Order10/14/2020
PC Food Mart408 Douglas Ave.,
Compliance Order10/14/2020
Smith Street Auto Sales and Service1524 Smith St.,
North Providence
Compliance Order10/14/2020
Syn Hookah Lounge114 Spruce St.,
Compliance Order10/14/2020
Pure Lounge387 Atwells Ave.,
Compliance Order10/14/2020

Governor’s message for the weekend:

One of the main reasons that we’re seeing a spike in cases is a lapse in mask-wearing in small, intimate groups. We have to recommit to wearing our masks any time we’re close to another person we don’t share a household with, even if they’re close friends or loved ones. I know that can be hard, but it’s what we have to do to keep them safe. So whenever you think a mask might be appropriate, it is appropriate. 
Please, stay safe this weekend and continue to wear a mask and social distance so that we can turn our numbers around. I’ll be on Facebook Live on Monday morning at 10 a.m. with Dr. Jim McDonald of the Rhode Island Department of Health to talk about more ways we can stay safe. I hope you’ll join us. You can watch even if you don’t have a Facebook account by visitingcDonald of the Rhode Island Department of Health to talk about more ways we can stay safe. I hope you’ll join us. You can watch even if you don’t have a Facebook account by visiting

Distance Learning – what happens when the teacher leaves the “room”?

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