Hawaii COVID-19 Joint Information Center Daily News Digest, July 24, 2020Posted on Jul 24, 2020 in Latest Department News
Modified Quarantine Rules in Place During Tropical Cyclone
The State of Hawai‘i’s mandatory 14-day quarantine rule for travelers is being modified temporarily in consideration of the impacts of Tropical Cyclone Douglas.
Governor David Ige said, “I want to make sure that those in quarantine are adequately prepared per the state recommendations. If you are in quarantine, to the extent possible, please have supplies and materials delivered and lean on friends and family to help build your supply kit. As a last resort, you are allowed to break quarantine, but only to procure necessary supplies and materials. Please physically distance yourself, wear a mask and minimize your time outside your home or place lodging and your contact with others. If possible, utilize curb-side pickup and similar options. To the extent possible, you should shelter in place. If you need to seek emergency shelter, please do so.”
Department of Health:
Second Day of Record COVID-19 Cases in Hawai‘i
After a record number of new coronavirus cases on Thursday, today the Hawai‘i Dept. of Health (DOH) is reporting another single-day record of 60 new COVID-19 infections. The majority of the cases, like yesterday, are on the island of O‘ahu (58), with one case on Maui, and the other one is a Hawai‘i resident diagnosed out of state.
State Health Director Bruce Anderson said, “We’re concerned that this relatively high level of cases is persisting on Oʻahu. Some of the cases we’re reporting today are associated with existing clusters, known cases and household spread, but others are new, unassociated cases that indicate increasing community spread. In contact tracing, we continue to identify cases connected with gatherings or just hanging out with close friends. Until we all recognize the importance of physically distancing from people outside of their households and wearing masks, we face the prospect of even higher numbers.”
Hawai‘i COVID-19 Counts as of 12:00 noon, July 24, 2020
|Island of Diagnosis||New Cases||Reported since
(including new cases)
|Total in hospitals|
|Residents Diagnosed outside HI||1||23|
Laboratory* Testing Data
There were 1,499 additional COVID-19 tests reported via electronic laboratory reporting.
|Total Number of Individuals Tested
by Clinical and State Laboratories
*Electronic Laboratory Reporting **15 test results were inconclusive
For more tables, charts and visualizations visit the DOH Disease Outbreak Control Division:https://health.hawaii.gov/coronavirusdisease2019/what-you-should-know/current-situation-in-hawaii
Contact Tracing Update:
“DOH is bringing on additional contact tracers to assist with case investigations and contact tracing,” said Dr. Sarah Park, State Epidemiologist. “As we have over 400 contact tracers now trained to augment existing staff resources, we have sufficient reserves for that purpose. Nevertheless, contact tracing and testing alone will not control the spread of COVID-19. Everyone needs to adhere to the safe distancing recommendations and wear masks when near others. That is the only way we as a community are going to prevent the spread of this very infectious disease,” said Park.
Department of the Attorney General:
Social Media Influencer Arrested for Quarantine Violations
A 20-year-old woman from Birmingham, Alabama was arrested this morning by Special Agents from the Investigations Division of the Dept. of the Attorney General.
Anne S. Salamanca arrived in Honolulu on July 6, and four days later, the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority (HTA) learned she was out in public breaking the State’s mandatory 14-day quarantine. HTA informed the AG Special Agents, who were provided videos showing her dancing in a store and out dining with companions.
KITV reported yesterday that Salamanca has millions of social media followers and claimed in a video that a law enforcement officer told her that if she had proof of a negative COVID-19 test, it was okay for her to escape quarantine.
Attorney General Clare E. Connors said, “None of my investigators would convey that information, as it is incorrect.The fact Ms. Salamanca has so many followers makes her actions that much more dangerous and concerning. The spread of misinformation can have very severe consequences during an emergency situation like we are in now.”
Yesterday, an anonymous caller identified the store where she was shown dancing. Special Agents contacted the retail establishment, which confirmed the report of her dancing there two days into her required quarantine period.
Salamanca was arrested in Waipahu and booked. Relatives bailed her out of jail after posting $2,000 on her behalf. She is the 24th person on O‘ahu arrested by the Dept. of the Attorney General for violating the travel self-quarantine order.
Hawai‘i Tourism Authority:
2,204 Passengers Arrive on Thursday
Yesterday marked 17 weeks since the State’s mandatory 14-day quarantine went into effect for all passengers arriving in Hawai‘i from out of state. Yesterday, a total of 2,360 people arrived in Hawai‘i including 607 visitors and 720 returning residents. There was a total of 33 arriving flights. This table shows the number of people who arrived by air from out of state yesterday but does not show interisland travel.
AIRPORT ARRIVALS FOR THURSDAY, JULY 23, 2020
|Relocate to Hawai‘i||16||16||100||6||138|
Department of Defense:
Hawai‘i National Guard Prepares for Douglas
As Tropical Cyclone Douglas approaches the state, HING Forces prepare to respond while continuing to assist all four counties and the State of Hawai‘i in COVID-19 mitigation measures. Currently, the HING has over 700 personnel executing specific duties for the counties and state in addressing COVID-19 needs. With the arrival of Douglas, the HING is standing by to respond to two fronts at the same time. HING Joint Task Force Commander Brig. Gen. Moses Kaoiwi Jr. said, “The Hawai‘i National Guard is prepared to provide support, in response to Tropical Cyclone Douglas, to the counties as needed. While a large number of our force is dedicated to COVID-19 mitigation, we still have service members not actively supporting the COVID-19 mission. These Soldiers and Airmen could be activated for on State Active Duty status.” Hawai‘i National Guardsmen currently supporting the COVID-19 mitigation mission, could be diverted to assist with any of the effects of Douglas only if the situation calls for it.
Department of Accounting and General Services:
Cares Act Relief for Arts and Culture Hawai‘i
The State Foundation on Culture and the Arts, Hawai‘i’s state government arts agency, is distributing $427,500 to 36 Hawai‘i arts and culture organizations impacted by COVID-19. These CARES Act Relief funds are intended to help save jobs in the arts sector and keep the doors open to organizations that add value to Hawai‘i’s economy and creative life of our communities. Nonprofit arts and culture organizations are members of the business community – employing people locally, purchasing goods and services within the community, and involved in the marketing and promotion of their cities. The arts are an economic driver in their communities, supporting jobs and generating government revenue. The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis reports that arts and cultural production accounts for $2,606,035,292 and 2.9-percent of Hawaiʻi’s economy, contributing 2,186 jobs. Executive Director of PAʻI Vicky Holt Takamine said, “This year will be a time of great change, funding for the arts will help our communities survive this pandemic and the economic challenges we will be facing.” A full list of grant recipients broken down by island is available here:
Images for media use:
Department of Labor and Industrial Relations:
State Has Issued $2.3 Billion in Benefits Since March 1
DLIR announced updated unemployment insurance claims information Thursday, including paying $2,349,952,775 since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic on March 1, 2020. DLIR Deputy Director Anne Perreira-Eustaquio said, “Ninety-two percent (92%) of the valid unemployment insurance claims that have come in since the beginning of the COVID-19 Pandemic have been processed and paid out by the DLIR. Currently our biggest challenge is the staff and resources required to address the high level of imposter and regular fraud in the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program…Congress appears poised to pass another economic stimulus package that includes an extension of additional unemployment insurance benefits. However, at this time the week ending July 25th, will be the last payable week of $600 payments to claimants. If anyone is still waiting on payments for any claims made from April 4 through July 25, you will be made whole and you will receive those benefits.”
As reported across the nation, fraudsters are targeting state unemployment insurance systems during the COVID-19 pandemic through various schemes and identity theft. Bad actors are using stolen personal information from sources outside of the department to apply for benefits through the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) and attempt to route payments to their own bank accounts. Through July 14, the department has issued $35,980,789 to imposter fraud claimants and prevented $125,347,758 of potential benefits being stopped. 93,994 PUA applications have been received and $466,552,749 in benefits has been paid. The vast majority of the 44,298 denied PUA claims were denied for either identity verification issues or due to potential or eligibility for regular unemployment insurance benefits.
Lead Public Information Officer
Hawaii COVID-19 Joint Information Center
Senior Communications Manager
Hawaii Dept. of Land & Natural Resources