(BIVN) – The following updates are from the State Department of Health (DOH) and Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense (HCCD).
8 New Positive Cases On Two Islands (DOH)
As of March 22, 2020, noon, there is a total of 56 confirmed or presumptive positive cases of COVID-19 in Hawai‘i. New positive results were received today for eight individuals on two islands. All new cases are Hawai‘i residents. Three people have required hospitalization; two remain hospitalized. Travel histories are pending, however two of the new cases had definite travel, while two had contact with travelers. In total, 48 cases are residents and 8 are non-residents. One of the cases reported today is a child, therefore, there are 54 adult and two pediatric cases.
3 Big Island Cases (HCCD)
Three individuals on Hawaii Island are in quarantine and being monitored by the Department of Health after testing positive for coronavirus. All 3 are travel related.
Definition of Community Spread (DOH)
Community spread is defined as cases that cannot be traced back to a traveler and have absolutely no travel related or involved connection with travel. We have been informed that there are residents of Hawai‘i who believe all COVID-19 positive cases originate from visitors to the state. Unfortunately, there is stigma developing against visitors in Hawai‘i. We’re asking the media to help people understand that of the 56 positive test results to date, 45 of them are the result of traveling residents or exposure to travelers. The majority of cases are residents who returned home after traveling. At this time, there may be residents returning home from a school that has closed or from other essential travel. It is important for all travelers to monitor their health for 14 days after traveling and to avoid exposing others and stay at home.
Lab Testing (DOH)
More than 2700 tests performed for people in Hawai‘i by private clinical labs to date. As the number of labs doing testing increases, so likely will the number of positive cases.
The DOH State Laboratories Division has tested 48 Persons Under Investigation (PUI) and 263 sentinel surveillance samples. The 263 sentinel surveillance tests have all been negative. These are representative samples taken from every county from people with flu-like symptoms who tested negative for influenza.
Who should be tested? (DOH)
Most people who are sick do not need to be tested. There is no specific medicine to treat COVID-19, so whether you test positive or negative, management of your illness will be the same.
Individuals who are not sick should not be tested even if they have been exposed to COVID-19.
Individuals who are sick with respiratory illness (e.g., fever and cough or shortness of breath) AND who are at a higher risk for severe respiratory infections (e.g., older people, those with chronic medical conditions including immunosuppression) should call their usual source of healthcare to discuss whether they should be tested for COVID-19 and/or other infections such as influenza.
A provider’s referral is required to receive testing.
If you do not have a provider, call an urgent care center or community clinic in your area.
Anyone having difficulty breathing should seek medical care immediately. If possible, call your healthcare provider first so they are prepared to receive you.
Other people with mild illness should help protect our most vulnerable and conserve our precious supplies by practicing social distancing measures, monitoring their illness, and calling their healthcare provider if their symptoms worsen or persist.
Governor’s Order for Self-Quarantine of All Travelers to Hawai‘i (DOH)
Effective, Thursday, March 26, 2020, Governor David Ige has ordered that all persons entering the State of Hawai‘i to self-quarantine for 14 days or for the duration of their stay in Hawai‘i, whichever is shorter. Upon arrival, residents are required to self-quarantine in a designated location in their residence. Visitors will self-quarantine in their hotel room or rented lodging. Self-quarantined individuals may only leave their designated location for medical emergencies or to seek medical care. Failure to comply with all rules and protocols related to quarantines is punishable by fines of up to $5000 and/or imprisonment of up to one year. DOH self-quarantine airport poster is attached.
Civil Defensde says there are no cruise ships scheduled for Hawaii State for the next 2 weeks and policies on this will be addressed later.
Social Distancing (DOH)
COVID-19 recommendations are changing the rules on how much physical distance individuals should keep from each other. Cancelling events that do not allow attendees to be at least six feet apart—the equivalent of two arms-length—and avoiding unnecessary physical meeting with others are proven strategies to mitigate the spread of the virus. The effectiveness of these initiatives largely depends on the cooperation and compliance from the public.
Vital Records / Marriage Licenses (DOH)
The safety and wellness of the Hawai‘i community is very important to the Department of Health. As a precaution against COVID-19, beginning Monday, 3/23/20, DOH will transition to an online/mail procedure for vital records (birth, marriage, death, divorce certificates) requests.
To complete the online request process: visit vitrec.ehawaii.gov.
To obtain forms and instructions for mail-in requests: visit health.hawaii.gov or call (808) 586-4733.
Applications for marriage licenses will be by appointment only. Couples must apply online and prepay the fee at marriage.ehawaii.gov prior to scheduling an appointment via phone (808) 586-4543 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.