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Coronavirus variants of concern now at 555 cases statewide says Hawaii Department of Health

  • JAMM AQUINO / APRIL 7
                                A man wearing a mask walks along Smith Street in Honolulu.

    JAMM AQUINO / APRIL 7

    A man wearing a mask walks along Smith Street in Honolulu.

The number of coronavirus cases involving variants of concern statewide has grown to 555, including 209 cases detected in the past two weeks, according to the Hawaii Department of Health.

Of all the variants, the largest number statewide is made up of so-called California variants, which include the B1.429 and B.1.427.

Both the B1.429 and B.1.427 have the L452R mutation linked to multiple outbreaks in Santa Clara as well as Los Angeles counties, and are known as California variants, which are more transmissible.

On Maui, the California variant is now the predominant strain, according to health officials.

State Epidemiologist Dr. Sarah Kemble said during a Maui County press conference on Wednesday that 82% of all strain sequences for Maui are the B1.429 variant.

“That’s the strain we’ve been talking about that we’ve been seeing in many of the clusters we’re investigating in the community on Maui,” she said. “So we know this strain really has kind of taken over in Maui.”

Statewide, there are 454 cases of the California variants, mostly B.1429, followed by 86 of the B.1.1.7 or UK variant, eight of the B.1.351 or South African variant, and seven of the P.1, or Brazil variant.

Oahu has most of these variants of concern cases, with 251, followed by Maui, with 215, then Hawaii County, with 33, and Kauai County, with six.

Another 50 variant casess, including 32 of the UK variant, are listed with unknown counties of origin.

The Health Department’s Laboratories Division began genome sequencing in June, and now examines 75 specimens statewide a week.

Here are the latest variant cases by county:

Oahu (Honolulu County)

>> B.1.429 or California variant 184

>> B.1.427 also California 21

>> B.1.1.7 or UK 35

>> B.1.351 or South African 7

>> P.1 or Brazil 4

Total Oahu cases involving variants of concern: 251

Maui County

>> B.1.429 or California 207

>> B.1.427 also California 0

>> B.1.1.7 or UK 6

>> B.1.351 or South African 0

>> P.1 or Brazil 2

Total Maui cases involving variants of concern: 215

Hawaii County

>> B.1.429 or California 19

>> B.1.427 also California 2

>> B.1.1.7 or UK 12

>> B.1.351 or South African 0

>>P.1 or Brazil 0

Total Hawaii cases involving variants of concern: 33

Kauai County

>> B.1.429 or California 5

>> B.1.427 also California 0

>> B.1.1.7 or UK 1

>> B.1.351 or South African 0

>> P.1 or Brazil 0

Total Kauai cases involving variants of concern: 6

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