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New coronavirus cases include cluster at Maui Correctional Center

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Hawaii Department of Health officials Saturday reported one new coronavirus-related death and 87 new infections — including a cluster of cases at Maui Community Correctional Center.

The data reported Saturday brings the state’s totals since the start of the pandemic to 444 fatalities and 27,838 cases.

Saturday’s new statewide infection cases included 33 on Oahu, 42 on Maui, eight on Hawaii island, and four residents diagnosed outside of Hawaii. As a result of updated information, state health officials said two Oahu cases were removed from the counts.

Approximately half of the Maui cases are part of a cluster at Maui Community Correctional Center, according to health officials.

Oahu moved into the less-restrictive Tier 3 of the city’s four-tier economic recovery plan on Feb. 25 after being in Tier 2 since Oct. 22. Tier 3 permits social and outdoor recreational gatherings of up to 10 people, and restaurants to seat 10 people at a table, up from five now. Tier 3 also allows funeral services with up to 25 attendees, and group fitness classes indoors with up to 10 participants. Gym capacity can increase to 50%. Restaurants and spiritual services can operate at full capacity as long as the establishments maintain 6 feet of distancing.

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 from Tier 3 to the least-restrictive Tier 4, the seven-day average of new cases must be below 20 on two consecutive Wednesdays. Also, the seven- day average positivity rate must be below 1% on those two Wednesdays. The earliest that Oahu could move into Tier 4 would be late March since it needs to stay in each tier for at least four weeks.

Saturday’s seven-day average case count for Oahu is 26 and the seven-day average positivity rate is 1.0%, according to Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi.

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