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Hawaii records 3 new COVID-19 fatalities on Oahu, 1 death at Hilo veterans home

  • Video by Cindy Ellen Russel; courtesy video Hawaii COVID-19 Joint Information Center

    For several hours, state and city officials shut down both sides of the H-3 freeway on Tuesday for drive-thru COVID-19 surge testing in an effort to test as many Oahu residents as possible.

  • CINDY ELLEN RUSSELL / CRUSSELL@STARADVERTISER.COM
                                Drivers line up inside the Kaneohe-bound Tetsuo Harano Tunnel for drive-thru COVID-19 testing. Each tunnel had 50 testing stations and 30 registrations stations inside.

    CINDY ELLEN RUSSELL / CRUSSELL@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Drivers line up inside the Kaneohe-bound Tetsuo Harano Tunnel for drive-thru COVID-19 testing. Each tunnel had 50 testing stations and 30 registrations stations inside.

  • COURTESY HAWAII COVID-19 JOINT INFORMATION CENTER
                                Drivers line up for drive-thru COVID-19 testing inside the Tetsuo Harano Tunnel today.

    COURTESY HAWAII COVID-19 JOINT INFORMATION CENTER

    Drivers line up for drive-thru COVID-19 testing inside the Tetsuo Harano Tunnel today.

  • CINDY ELLEN RUSSELL / CRUSSELL@STARADVERTISER.COM
                                Traffic was light shortly before the 9 a.m. start of the COVID-19 surge testing on the H-3 freeway.

    CINDY ELLEN RUSSELL / CRUSSELL@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Traffic was light shortly before the 9 a.m. start of the COVID-19 surge testing on the H-3 freeway.

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Oahu began COVID-19 surge testing inside the Tetsuo Harano Tunnel on H-3 freeway early this morning as Hawaii this afternoon kicked off September with three new coronavirus-related deaths on Oahu and another at a Hilo veterans home.

Hawaii Department of Health officials today recorded four new coronavirus-related deaths and 181 new cases, bringing the statewide totals since the beginning of the pandemic to 74 fatalities and 8,653 cases.

Lt. Gov. Josh Green said today the latest deaths of three Oahu residents and one Hawaii island resident had underlying health conditions. Oahu’s latest victims included three individuals — a man and a woman between 70 and 79 years old, and a man over the age of 80 — whom were all hospitalized before they died, Green said. A Hawaii County man over 80 years old died amid an outbreak at the Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home in Hilo, he said.

A total of 62 Hawaii deaths have been on Oahu, eight on Maui, three on the Big Island, while one was a Kauai resident who died on the mainland. The U.S. death toll is over 184,000 today.

Health officials today reported 157 new cases today on Oahu, 19 on Hawaii island and five in Maui County.

Today’s total coronavirus cases by county since the start of the outbreak included 7,848 on Oahu, 383 in Hawaii County, 340 in Maui County, and 57 in Kauai County. There are also 25 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside of the state.

As of today, 5,945 infections are considered active cases statewide, with a total of 2,634 patients now classified by health officials as “released from isolation,” or about 30% of those infected. The category counts those infected people who have met the criteria for being released from isolation. Fifty-six new release cases — 48 on Oahu, seven in Hawaii County and one in Maui County — were reported today.

Hawaii’s run of triple-digit increases in daily new COVID-19 cases in August prompted state, city and federal government to partner in a free surge testing program on Oahu with plans to administer tests to 90,000 people over roughly three weeks. Surge testing on the H-3 freeway will resume Thursday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Go to doIneedacovid19test.com for more information.

>> PHOTOS: H-3 freeway shut down in both directions for coronavirus surge testing

Gov. David Ige said today the surge tests will be sent to a mainland lab for processing. “It does take a few days longer to get your test results, so if you suspect you are infected with the virus you should go to your health care provider,” Ige said.

Officials counted 4,004 new tests in today’s tally, with today’s 181 positive cases representing 5% of the total tested. Of the 202,186 coronavirus tests conducted so far by state and clinical laboratories in Hawaii since the start of the outbreak, a total of 4.3% have been positive.

Of all the confirmed Hawaii cases, 532 have required hospitalizations, with 24 new hospitalizations — 20 on Oahu, three in Hawaii County and one in Maui County — reported today, health officials said.

Green said today there are now 288 confirmed or suspected COVID-19 patients in Hawaii hospitals, with 48 of them in intensive care units and 27 on ventilators. He said that 130, or 53%, of the state’s 244 ICU beds, and 80, or 17%, of Hawaii’s 459 ventilators are now in use, by both coronavirus and non-virus patients.

Two hospitalizations in the statewide count are Hawaii residents who were diagnosed and treated outside the state. Of the 530 hospitalizations within the state, 468 have been on Oahu, 45 on Maui, 16 on Hawaii island, and one on Kauai.

By county, Honolulu has seen 2,197 patients released from isolation, and Maui has had 192 patients released. Hawaii County has 190 active infections, while Kauai has one, according to Health Department figures.

>> RELATED: State Health Director Bruce Anderson and Public Safety Department Director Nolan Espinda are leaving their posts

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