(BIVN) – The morning after Hawaiʻi saw its highest increase in COVID-19 cases in a single-day, the Hawai’i County Civil Defense issued a new message reporting one (1) new active case on the Big Island. The message stated:
On today’s update of COVID-19, the number of active cases, monitored by the Department of Health, for Hawaii Island is nine. Details of this one increase have not been received.
The United States continues to see a large increase of infected people occurring. Hawaii State has also recorded the highest single day increase in the past day. The Department of Health reports that 38 of this increase occurred on Oahu. The Department of Health indicates that the major cause of the increases, especially over the past week, is due to people not following policies of face coverings and distancing. Do be reminded that it is mandatory to wear a face covering on Hawaii Island.
Hawaii County remains in a good place, but know how important it is to continue, and even get better, in following the preventive policies of face coverings, distancing, gatherings, and cleanliness.
Civil defense announced an ʻOhana food service is scheduled for today in Kaʻū at Naʻalehu Shopping Center. Distribution begins at 10 a.m., officials say. “Thank you Hawaii Food Basket for providing this service and the Hawaii National Guard and County Task Force for helping,” civil defense said.
The County also says coronavirus testing is available today at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo, at the campus gym located next to the tennis courts. Testing begins at 10 a.m. this morning and ends at 2 p.m. this afternoon. “Thank you Premier Medical Group for providing this service and the County Task Force for helping,” the civil defense message stated.
On Tuesday, State officials held a news conference to discuss the jump in new cases.
“The trends are very disturbing,” said Dr. Bruce Anderson, the director of the Hawai’i Department of Health, during a Tuesday news conference. “Over the past months, most of the cases have been associated with known cases or clusters of cases. We are now seeing more cases without a history of exposure to other known cases or clusters.”
“We’re seeing disease occurring in clusters that involve as as few as a couple people, to as much as 15 people,” said State Epidemiologist Dr. Sarah Park.
“Whether it’s a gathering, such as a Father’s Day party,” Dr. Park said. “We’ve seen, as mentioned, a gym cluster…. We’ve seen a business trip that went to a neighbor island, actually to the Big Island, that we’re seeing cases associated with that. As well as trainings… held by, like, Hawaiian Airlines for example, where the number of individuals in the training has been involved.”
Dr. Park the said the common theme they are seeing is that “people are letting their guard down,” and that the community “has interpreted reopening businesses and getting back together as it’s safe to be together again. And you know, to a certain extent that’s true. But to another extent it isn’t exactly true, because we’re living in a world where COVID exists,” she said.
“What that means is that even among our friends or family we haven’t seen in a while,” Park said, “we need to mask up and we need to keep our distance.”