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Hawaii sees 190 new coronavirus infections; Halawa prison cluster accounts for 54% of Oahu’s latest cases

  • CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARADVERTISER.COM
                                Waimanalo Health Center offered COVID-19 drive-thru testing at Waimanalo District Park on Saturday.

    CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Waimanalo Health Center offered COVID-19 drive-thru testing at Waimanalo District Park on Saturday.

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UPDATE: 3:30 p.m.

Hawaii Department of Health officials clarified this afternoon that the coronavirus cluster at Halawa Correctional Facility accounted for 85 of the 158 new infections reported for Oahu earlier today.

The statistics released today reflect the new cases reported to the department through 11:59 p.m. Saturday.

Separately, the state Department of Public Service said today that two more Halawa prison inmates tested positive, bringing the total number of infected individuals in the current outbreak to 169 inmates and 28 staff.

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Hawaii health officials today reported 190 new coronavirus infections statewide, bringing the total since the start of the pandemic to 19,424 cases.

The state’s official coronavirus-related death toll remains 274 as no new deaths were reported today.

The official state Department of Health coronavirus-related death toll includes 211 fatalities on Oahu, 43 on Hawaii island, 17 on Maui, one on Kauai, and two Hawaii residents who died on the mainland. The Hawaii County Civil Defense Agency said today that the Big Island’s COVID-19 death toll remained 49; state health officials have yet to verify coronavirus as a factor in six of those deaths.

The U.S. coronavirus death toll surpassed 300,000 today with infection cases topping 16 million since the start of the pandemic; the worldwide death toll is more than 1.6 million with over 72 million total confirmed infections.

Today’s new statewide infection cases reported by the Health Department include 158 on Oahu, 15 on the Big Island, 15 on Maui, and two Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state. As a result of updated information, one Oahu case was removed from the counts, officials said.

The statistics released today reflect the new cases reported to the department through 11:59 p.m. Saturday.

It was not immediately clear how many of today’s newly reported cases came from the recent large cluster at the Halawa Correctional Facility. The state Department of Public Safety said Sunday that the Halawa prison cluster had grown to 167 inmates and 28 staff. DPS officials said they received 99 more positive tests out of 413 inmate new test results received for a positivity rate of 24%. There were also seven more staff positive test results.

The affected inmates are in medical isolation and infected staff are following government self-quarantine guidelines, officials said. The prison’s warden also ordered facility-wide isolation and quarantine protocols on Thursday as a precaution, officials said Sunday.

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Health officials counted 4,972 COVID-19 new test results, for a 3.82% statewide positivity rate.

The total number of coronavirus cases by island since the start of the outbreak are 16,423 on Oahu, 1,733 in Hawaii County, 707 on Maui, 134 on Kauai, 106 on Lanai, and 22 on Molokai. There are also 299 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside of the state.

Hawaii health officials said that of the state’s total infection count, 1,425 cases are considered to be active. Health officials say they consider infections reported in the past 14 days to be a “proxy number for active cases.” The number of active cases in the state rose by 106 today.

By island, Oahu has 1,099 active cases, Maui has 166, Big Island has 135, Kauai has 21, and Molokai has four, according to the latest tally.

Of all the confirmed Hawaii infection cases, 1,367 have required hospitalizations, with two new hospitalizations reported today by state health officials.

Three hospitalizations in the statewide count are Hawaii residents who were diagnosed and treated outside the state. Of the 1,364 hospitalizations within the state, 1,202 have been on Oahu, 82 on the Big Island, 67 on Maui, seven on Kauai, five on Lanai, and one on Molokai.

According to the latest information from the department’s Hawaii COVID-19 data dashboard, a total of 58 patients with the virus were in Hawaii hospitals as of noon Friday, with 21 in intensive care units and 17 on ventilators.

Oahu moved to the less-restrictive Tier 2 of Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s four-tier economic recovery plan on Oct. 22. The mayor’s office says that to gauge whether Honolulu will move to a different tier, the city takes a “weekly assessment” of two key COVID-19 numbers each Wednesday. To move to Tier 3 from Tier 2, the 7-day average of new cases must be below 50 on two consecutive Wednesdays. Also, the 7-day average positivity rate must be below 2.5% on those two Wednesdays.

Today’s seven-day average case count for Oahu is 84 and the positivity rate was 3.0%, according to Caldwell.


This breaking news story will be updated as more information becomes available.


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