(BIVN) – The total number of positive COVID-19 cases statewide in Hawaiʻi – both presumptive and confirmed – has increased by 29 to 151.
There have been 10 (cumulative) cases identified on the Big Island, up three from yesterday. There are 108 cases on Oʻahu, up 19. There are 11 on Kauai, up 6. The Maui numbers held today at 16.
Added to the total number are 4 pending cases and 2 Hawaiʻi residents diagnosed outside of Hawaʻi.
12 have required hospitalization, and there have been no reported deaths from the virus in Hawaiʻi.
From the Hawaiʻi Department of Health:
DOH reports 29 positive test results today: One (1) of the cases is a minor and the rest are adults, 24 are residents of the state, three (3) are non-residents, and information is pending on two cases. Of the 29 new positive test results reported today, 19 are from the County of
Honolulu, three (3) from the County of Hawai‘i, and six (6) from the County Kaua‘i, one (1) is unknown. There are 151 presumptive or positive cases to date, with the vast majority being Hawai‘i residents (126) and 19 non-Hawai‘i residents (to date, six cases have unknown
residency).There have been nearly 7,000 laboratory tests conducted for COVID-19 samples from Hawai‘i with 151 positive results to date
Sentinel Surveillance Testing Results
DOH is partnering with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to conduct community sentinel surveillance testing to detect community transmission of COVID-19 among patients who have mild to moderate febrile respiratory illness. To date, the Sentinel SurveillanceProgram for COVID-19 has tested more than 350 samples from individuals throughout the state with negative test results. The samples were collected from providers throughout the state selected to ensure geographic and age representation proportional to the state’s population.
Warning About Use of Antimalaria Drugs for COVID-19
The Hawai‘i Department of Health (DOH) is warning everyone about the hazards and dangers of using non-approved drugs for COVID-19. Antimalarial drugs have been recently reported as possible treatments against COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.
While hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine prescription medications have been used for treatment of malaria and certain inflammatory conditions, the efficacy for COVID-19 are unproven and potentially dangerous.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there is no specific medicine to prevent or treat COVID-19 and a vaccine is not yet available.
“Hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine can cause severe cardiac toxicity, and in high doses over a long duration, can cause retinal damage and lead to permanent blindness,” said Dr. Alvin Bronstein, DOH Emergency Medical Services and Injury Prevention System Branch Chief.
“Individuals using these medications without physician supervision run serious risks of side effects and potential overdoses. Other medications are being touted, but nothing has been proven to be effective and may even do more harm than good.”
On March 25, the American Association of Poison Control Centers issued a warning about the dangers of using hydroxychloroquine to treat coronavirus, stating “While chloroquine/hydroxychloroquine has demonstrated benefits for multiple chronic autoimmune and rheumatologic diseases, the benefit for treatment of COVID-19 has not been definitively established. It is critical that any use of these medications is coordinated with a treating physician with full understanding of the potential risks and benefits.”
Hydroxychloroquine is used for treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and lupus erythematosus. Chloroquine has been demonstrated to be effective for malaria, lupus and chronic rheumatoid arthritis, but has significant side effects, including gastrointestinal distress and potential permanent vision damage.
If you or someone you know has taken chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine and are experiencing adverse reactions, call 911, the Hawai‘i Regional Poison Center (800-222-1222) or seek immediate medical care.
Appointments with County Departments Move Online
The County of Hawai‘i announces that a new Appointment Request form is online, and is taking requests for virtual appointments with County Departments. At this time of COVID-19 emergency, no face-to-face appointments are being taken.
The link to request appointments is here.
The County Departments/Divisions that are taking virtual appointment requests are:
- Finance – Real Property Tax Division
- Finance – Vehicle Registration and Licensing Division
- Finance – All Other
- Parks and Recreation
- Planning Department
- Public Works – Administration
- Public Works – Building Division
- Public Works – Engineering Division
Insurers Urged to Work with Customers During Crisis
State Insurance Commissioner Colin Hayashida sent a memo yesterday to all admitted and non-admitted insurers offering policies in Hawai‘i. He noted that businesses are experiencing substantially reduced revenue and employees are experiencing reduced hours or job losses, with far-reaching repercussions on the horizon. Hayashida is asking insurers not to cancel or not renew policies for failure to pay premiums during this time of hardship. You can read the entire memo here: