A Maui woman who became infected with COVID-19 in the hospital has died, the 17th coronavirus-fatality in Hawaii, state health officials announced today.
The woman was over 60 years old and had underlying medical conditions. She had been in Maui Memorial Medical Center since late February and became infected in mid-April, they said.
COVID-19 is not believed to be the primary cause of death due to her other serious illnesses, but may have been a contributing factor, officials said. They did not say when she died or provide other details about the case.
Eleven of Hawaii’s coronavirus-related deaths have been on Oahu and six on Maui.
“Our sincere condolences to the family and friends of another valued member of our community. COVID-19 is still a critical issue for everyone in Hawaii. Please follow social distancing guidelines and current emergency rules to help protect our most vulnerable people,” said state Health Director Bruce Anderson in a news release.
Maui Memorial has been the epicenter of the state’s largest cluster of coronavirus cases. As of last week, there were a total of 59 COVID-19 positive cases at the hospital, including 38 staff and 21 patients.
Health officials also announced two new confirmed cases of coronavirus today but said the statewide total remains at 620 after revising the data.
“As a result of data cleaning, two duplicate cases were identified and removed from the counts (one from Honolulu County and one from Maui County)” officials said today.
Today’s two new reported cases were on Oahu and the Big Island.
The statewide total includes 400 cases on Oahu, 116 in Maui County, 74 on Hawaii island, and 21 in Kauai County, according to health officials. The statewide total also includes nine Hawaii residents diagnosed outside of the state.
A total 544 patients have recovered since the start of the outbreak, with health officials reporting three new recoveries today. Nearly 88% of the people who have been infected in Hawaii are now classified as released from isolation by the state Health Department.
By county, Honolulu has seen 373 patients (or 93%) recover, Maui has had 88 recoveries (76%), the Big Island has seen 63 (85%), and Kauai has had 20 recoveries (95%), as of noon today, the Health Department says.
Of all the confirmed Hawaii cases since the start of the outbreak, 73 have required hospitalizations, with one new hospitalization reported today, health officials said. One hospitalization in the statewide count is a Hawaii resident who was diagnosed and treated outside the state, officials said.
Of the 72 hospitalizations in the state, 53 have been on Oahu, 17 on Maui and one each on the Big Island and Kauai.
About 33,000 coronavirus tests have been conducted by state and clinical laboratories so far in Hawaii and just under 2% have been positive.
Kauai has not had a new COVID-19 in three weeks prompting Mayor Derek Kawakami to start a phased-in reopening of the island’s economy, including a four-day, 10-hour-a-day work week for most county government offices.
In announcing the Maui woman’s death today, health officials stressed that despite the state’s relatively low rate of infection Hawaii “must not let our guard down.”
“With the pending reopening of businesses, we urge everyone to continue doing what they’ve been doing — stay at home, unless it’s necessary to go out, practice social distancing, wash your hands, and wear masks,” Anderson said. “For now, this is our new normal, in order to protect each other and prevent the spread of the disease.”