Hawaii COVID-19 Joint Information Center Daily News Digest, July 29, 2020Posted on Jul 29, 2020 in Latest Department News
Office of the Governor:
Spike in Cases Remind Community to Stay Vigilant, Reinstating Measures Being Considered
At a news briefing Wednesday, Gov. Ige addressed the latest spike in COVID-19 cases. He said while the State is concerned about the high numbers, it was anticipated because the State laboratory was not testing during Hurricane Douglas. DOH reported a total of 109 cases overnight. Gov. Ige also assured the public the spike is manageable, and Hawai‘i still has adequate healthcare capacity. However, he is now proposing counties reinstate some measures in coordination with the State in an effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19. This includes limiting social gatherings to 10 people or fewer. The exception would be controlled environments like DOE, UH, and other cohorts where safe practices are being followed and monitored. Second, re-close bars. Third, work with counties to reinstate restrictions on gatherings in parks, consistent with the 10 or fewer people rule – although this time prohibiting structures like tents and bouncy houses. Lastly, re-evaluating guidelines issued for sports activities. Gov. Ige said, “We are all responsible for each other. Public health officials and all the available data say the best defense against COVID-19 is still taking personal responsibility. We cannot become complacent. Stay six feet apart, wear your mask, wash your hands, avoid large gatherings, stay home if you’re sick, and keep your kids home if they’re sick. We can beat this if we all work together.”
Gov. Ige also emphasized that people who are in quarantine must remain in their designated location. Because of the pressing danger from Hurricane Douglas, he allowed people to get supplies. However, the threat has passed, and there is currently no exemption from quarantine for this reason.
Office of the Lieutenant Governor:
Healthcare Capacity Update
Lt. Gov. Josh Green gave an update Wednesday on Hawai‘i’s healthcare capacity, giving a more in depth look at the hospitalization numbers. There are currently 624 active cases in the state. Other statistics include:
- 112 out of 244 ICU beds are in use (46%)
- Of the ICU beds in use, 15 are COVID-19 positive
- 64 out of 459 ventilators are in use (14%)
- Of the ventilators in use, 9 are COVID-19 positive
- Currently 61 patients who are confirmed or suspected of having COVID-19 are hospitalized
- Since the beginning of the pandemic, we’ve had 167 hospitalizations cumulative-to-date
Lt. Gov. Green pointed out that hospitalizations usually lag behind daily case counts because it takes time for the disease to progress in patients. To date, there has been a roughly 11-percent hospitalization rate for people who catch COVID-19. Lt. Gov Green said, “While our healthcare capacity is fine now, if this surge in cases continues, we can expect to see an increase in hospitalizations and possible fatalities. We need everyone to do their part in helping slow the spread of Covid-19, including possible new measures from government as Gov. Ige mentioned, and a greater need for personal responsibility for wearing masks and social distancing.”
Department of Health:
Number of COVID-19 Cases Top 100, Record Number Anticipated Due to Testing Delays
The number of COVID-19 cases reported Wednesday hit another single-day record. The case count for today stands at a total of 109; 98 on O‘ahu, nine (9) on Maui, and two (2) on Kaua‘i. A total of 1,653 tests were processed between yesterday and today. State Health Director Dr. Bruce Anderson said, “The dramatic increase in cases reported today was anticipated based on recent trends since the Fourth of July weekend, which continue. We are seeing an increase in small and large social gatherings, including gatherings on beaches and in our parks, at homes and in workplaces. We have also recently seen an increase in cases associated with bars, gyms other establishments where physical distancing and masking is not regularly practiced.”
Multiple household and other clusters have been associated with social interactions such as house parties, beach parties/gatherings, birthday parties, father’s day and 4th of July gatherings, religious functions, co-workers sitting in prolonged meetings while removing masks to eat or drink, shopping, funeral events, meeting for drinks and socializing at bars. Dr. Anderson added, “We’re seeing relaxed rules around our community and in businesses where people stop wearing masks and don’t practice physical distancing. We all have to take personal responsibility to protect ourselves as well as others. Masking and physical distancing not only protect us but also those who are most vulnerable to COVID-19. As we anticipate schools to re-open, our children are going to need to look to adults to set an example and we can’t let out guards down right now.”
Hawai‘i COVID-19 Counts as of 12:00 noon, July 29, 2020
|Island of Diagnosis||New Cases||Reported since
(including new cases)
|Total in hospitals|
|Residents Diagnosed outside HI||0||23|
++As a result of updated information, one case from O‘ahu was removed from the counts.
Laboratory* Testing Data
There were 1,653 additional COVID-19 tests reported via electronic laboratory reporting between yesterday and today.
|Total Number of Individuals Tested
by Clinical and State Laboratories
*Electronic Laboratory Reporting **16 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
Department of the Attorney General:
Tiny Tadani Arrested for Quarantine Violation
Special Agents from the Investigations Division of the Dept. of the Attorney General arrested 57-year-old Tiny Nitro Tadani at a vendor booth on Ward Avenue this morning. He was booked and charged with violating the State’s mandatory 14-day quarantine.
A concerned citizen reported the case after viewing Tadani’s social media site showing him in Las Vegas, arriving back in Honolulu on July 25. Two days later, investigators say, he video- taped himself dining at a Honolulu restaurant with his family. The citizen was upset due to Tadani’s status as a local celebrity and reported it to a group tracking quarantine violators, which in turn reported it to the AG’s office. Tadani was observed this morning working at his vendor booth and was arrested. He posted bail of $2,000.
Hawai‘i Tourism Authority:
Yesterday, 2,255 people arrived in Hawai‘i. This table shows the number of people who arrived by air from out of state yesterday and does not include interisland travel. This data was collected from the Hawai‘i Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Mandatory Travel Declaration Form.
AIRPORT ARRIVALS FOR TUESDAY, JULY 28, 2020
|Relocate to Hawai‘i||20||7||108||8||143|
Department of Land and Natural Resources:
Violations of COVID-19 Emergency Rules Contributes to Kaua’i Park Closure
Egregious behavior and overuse have prompted the DLNR Division of State Parks to close Polihale State Park on Kaua‘i’s west side indefinitely. State Parks Administrator Curt Cottrell said, “This decision is based on input from staff, law enforcement, health officials and west Kauaʻi residents. Polihale, like Kaʻena Point on Oʻahu has a history of abuse, illegal gatherings and camping.”
It is nearly impossible to enforce park rules due to its large size and isolated location. COVID-19 has exacerbated all those issues, and public health and safety concerns, contributed to the decision to close the park. Also informing the decision:
- Over 1000 people camped at Polihale on a recent weekend, though only 80 were legally permitted. Several hundred parked trucks formed a line spanning nearly the entire 2-mile long beach.
- Trucks racing on the beach and driving through dunes which contain both Hawaiian burial sites and critically endangered plants.
- Overuse has led to widespread defecation within the fragile dune system.
- Numerous complaints about large gatherings and a lack of social distancing, despite emergency orders.
State Parks Assistant Administrator Alan Carpenter added, “Until people can temper their behavior in the interest of everyone, we cannot responsibly leave places like Polihale open. There were many who did not want it reopened after recent road repairs, due to coronavirus concerns, but we wanted to give folks a chance to enjoy it and prove that they could treat places with respect in the absence of tourists. At Polihale, they failed in that regard, and it needs a rest.”
Hawai‘i COVID-19 Joint Information Center
(808) 636-8914 (Please note new phone number)