(BIVN) – Governor David Ige announced that Hawai‘i’s pre-travel testing program, giving travelers the option of possibly avoiding 14-day-long quarantine upon arrival to the state, will begin on October 15.
The long-discussed measure to restart tourism in the time of COVID-19 was detailed during a Wednesday news conference. The State says:
Pre-travel testing enables travelers to avoid a mandatory 14-day quarantine if they are tested no earlier than 72 hours before their flight arrives with an FDA-approved nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT), performed using a nasal swab, and can show proof of negative test results from a CLIA certified laboratory. Travelers also will have their temperatures checked upon arrival and must fill out a travel and health form. Upon arrival in Hawai‘i, passengers unable to provide proof of an approved negative test will be required to go into quarantine for 14 days or until they can provide proof of negative test results.
Lt. Governor Josh Green will spearhead the pre-travel testing program, “which includes adding partners to administer the tests and sourcing new testing options and is also responsible for planning the state’s COVID-19 vaccination strategy,” the State says. Green participated in the new conference from his home, where he is isolated with COVID-19.
- According to the State, key components of the pre-travel testing program include:
- All travelers must either pre-test or go into 14-day quarantine upon arrival to the state
- All travelers are required to have temperature checked and complete a health & travel questionnaire
- As an alternative to quarantine a traveler must produce evidence of a negative COVID-19 test no earlier than 72-hours prior to their flight arrival in Hawai‘i
- The interisland quarantine for anyone arriving on any island other than O‘ahu continues through Oct. 15 unless terminated or extended by a separate emergency proclamation
FDA-approved NAAT tests, processed by a CLIA-certified laboratory are the only types of coronavirus tests currently approved
- Currently approved trusted testing partners are CVS and Kaiser Permanente
“Together with the progress we’ve made, and continue to make, in the fight against COVID-19, this new leadership team gives us confidence that the time is right to launch our pre-travel COVID-19 testing program, which is an important step toward reviving our economy while continuing to protect public health,” said Gov. Ige.
The Governor also announced a a new leadership team that will oversee the state’s public health response to COVID-19. Along with Lt. Gov. Green, the team includes:
- Maj. Gen. Ken Hara, director, Hawaiʻi Emergency Management Agency, continues his role as incident commander, spearheading the collaboration between federal, state and county resources to address the pandemic response.
- Dr. Libby Char, director, State Department of Health, is responsible for the management of the state’s public health programs and collaboration between state, county, and private healthcare partners.
- Dr. Virginia Pressler, former director of the State Department of Health, has volunteered to lead the Laulima Alliance, a cross functional team of public and private sector resources, ensuring that all have a voice in policy making and implementation of programs responding to the pandemic.
“This new leadership team gives us a stronger operational structure, stronger leadership, and clears the way for stronger partnerships between the public and private sectors,” said Gov. Ige.