Oahu today recorded the third straight day of triple-digit new coronavirus cases just as the state surpassed 20,000 total infections since the outbreak began.
“While much of the attention lately has been around vaccines, our metrics are trending in the wrong direction,” Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell said in a tweet. “I know we’re tired, but we cannot ignore this surge.”
Hawaii health officials today reported 156 new coronavirus infections statewide, bringing the total since the start of the pandemic to 20,015 cases.
The state’s official coronavirus-related death toll remains at 281 with no new deaths reported today.
The official state Department of Health coronavirus-related death toll includes 217 fatalities on Oahu, 44 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 remains at 50. The state’s death toll for Hawaii island stood at 44. Health officials have yet to verify coronavirus as a factor in six Hawaii island deaths.
The U.S. coronavirus death toll was more than 315,000 today with infection cases over 17.5 million since the start of the pandemic.
Today’s new statewide infection cases reported by the Health Department include 116 on Oahu, 21 on the Big Island, 14 on Maui, four Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state, and one on Kauai.
The statistics released today reflect the new cases reported to the department through 11:59 p.m. Thursday.
Oahu’s case count includes coronavirus infections at prisons. Hawaii Department of Public Safety said today 55 inmates at Halawa Correctional Facility have tested positive out of 238 tests. In addition, eight staff at the facility also tested positive.
“Surge testing, with the assistance of the Department of Health and Hawaii National Guard and Project Vision Hawaii, will continue until there are no new positive cases at the facility,” according to a news release.
Health officials counted 6,046 COVID-19 new test results, for a 2.58% statewide positivity rate.
The total number of coronavirus cases by island since the start of the outbreak are 16,876 on Oahu, 1,790 in Hawaii County, 760 on Maui, 137 on Kauai, 106 on Lanai, and 22 on Molokai. There are also 324 Hawaii residents diagnosed outside of the state.
Hawaii health officials said that of the state’s total infection count, 1,529 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 40 today.
By island, Oahu has 1,186 active cases, Maui has 167, Big Island has 156, Kauai has 17, and Molokai has three, according to the latest tally.
Of all the confirmed Hawaii infection cases, 1,405 have required hospitalizations, with 11 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 1,402 hospitalizations within the state, 1,235 have been on Oahu, 84 on the Big Island, 70 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 60 patients with the virus were in Hawaii hospitals as of noon Friday, with 16 in intensive care units and seven 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 95 and the positivity rate is 3.4%, according to Caldwell.
This breaking news story will be updated as more information becomes available.