Events:

Health

Additional COVID-19 vaccine booster dose: For everyone age 50+ and immunocompromised age 12+

Today, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommended a second booster dose of mRNA COVID-19 vaccine (that is, either Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) for everyone age 50 and older at least four months after their prior booster dose, with a strong recommendation for everyone […]

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RI COVID-19 Test Standing Order: Allows direct billing insurance at pharmacies

Under a new standing order, every person in RI with either Medicaid or private health insurance should be able to pick up COVID-19 rapid antigen test (RAT) kits from any pharmacy without having to pay up-front. Despite a federal government mandate that health insurers must cover up to eight kits per month for every covered […]

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News Analysis – Failure on COVID-19 rapid testing availability: Insurers game the system

A federal mandate issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) requires health insurers to either directly cover or indirectly reimburse each insured individual for up to eight at-home over-the-counter COVID-19 rapid antigen test (RAT) kits per month, up to $12 per test. Families on the same insurance plan are eligible for RAT […]

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Alexander-Scott not running for Congress: Former RI health director bows out of politics for now

Dr Nicole Alexander-Scott, who resigned from her post as director of the RI Department of Health a few weeks ago (“RI Health Director Alexander-Scott resigns: Led state’s COVID-19 response from the beginning”, by Michael Bilow, Jan 13, 2022), sent Motif a statement ending speculation that she would be a candidate for the open seat being […]

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McDonald named interim RIDOH director: Part of new transition team

Dr James McDonald, medical director of the RI Department of Health (RIDOH) since Feb 2012, has been named interim director following the resignation of Director Dr Nicole Alexander-Scott on Jan 13 and of Deputy Director Tom McCarthy on Jan 18, both resignations effective Feb 1, according to a statement issued this morning by the office […]

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Free rapid COVID-19 tests available: US government web page, pharmacies

Every residential address in the US can order four rapid antigen test (RAT) kits for free, expected to be delivered in late January, through an official government web page: covidtests.gov (which currently redirects to a site operated by the US Postal Service special.usps.com/testkits). Persons need enter only their name and shipping address to place a […]

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RI Health Director Alexander-Scott resigns: Led state’s COVID-19 response from the beginning

Dr Nicole Alexander-Scott, MD, MPH, who has served as director of the RI Department of Health (RIDOH) since 2015 and spearheaded the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic from the beginning, has resigned effective two weeks from today, according to a statement from Gov. Daniel McKee, and the governor “regretfully accepted.” She will continue in […]

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News Analysis — RI ignored weeks of COVID-19 warnings: Latest surge almost all Delta, not Omicron, so far

At time of writing, RI is in bad shape for COVID-19, with a surge of cases unprecedented over the course of the entire pandemic. RI is weeks behind where it could have been if it had taken into account clear warning signs. At a Woonsocket press conference with Gov. Daniel McKee and others on Dec […]

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