Hawai'i COVID-19 daily news digest April 25, 2020
6th Supplementary Proclamation Continues Stay-at-Homes Rules Until End of May
In announcing his 6th Supplementary Proclamation this afternoon, Governor David Ige paid testament to everyone’s efforts in keeping the number of new cases of COVID-19 low this week, while recognizing that, “every loss is a sad moment for our community.” The deaths of two O‘ahu residents reported yesterday, along with 12 others previously, demonstrate the need for continued commitment and willingness to follow his social distancing mandates – to help protect those most susceptible to this serious virus, which can spread very quickly. For that reason, Governor Ige is asking everyone to remain vigilant. His 6th Supplemental Proclamation consolidates the rules and mandates from all previous proclamations including the Stay-at-Home order and the mandatory 14-day traveler self-quarantine through May 31.
Governor Ige’s Comments on 6th Supplementary Proclamation
At an afternoon media briefing the governor said the decision to extend rules and restrictions was not an easy one. He said, “I know this has been difficult for everyone. Businesses need to reopen. People want to end this self-imposed isolation. And we all want our lives to return to normal.” The governor noted that Hawai‘i has been fortunate to not have the high rate of coronavirus infection seen in other states. He thanked everyone for complying with the stay-at-home order, practicing social distancing, and wearing face coverings when out in public. “We are flattening the curve,” Governor Ige said. “However, my greatest fear is that if we move to reopen too quickly, we will see a sudden surge in new cases that would result in over-running our healthcare system and more deaths.” He added that with Hawai‘i being very successful in controlling the spread, he will be relaxing some aspects of the lockdown.
Key Aspects of 6th Supplementary Proclamation
Stay-at-Home order extended until May 31, 2020
Mandatory 14-day traveler-quarantine order extended until May 31, 2020
Outdoor exercise is permitted, including swimming, surfing and walking pets. In addition, running, jogging or walking on the beach will be permitted, as long as social distancing requirements are observed.
Eviction moratorium extended until end of May
Pledge for Continued State, County, Legislative Cooperation
Governor Ige said he is working on a statewide reopening plan that will be based on facts, science and guidance from healthcare providers. The governor commented, “We will be taking a phased approved to re-opening. We hope that more measures will be relaxed before the end of May. This is only the beginning of a long, cautious process. We will be in constant discussions with the Counties, the legislature and community leadership as we develop our plans.” He indicated a key consideration is a review of industry best practices to ensure that businesses can accommodate social distancing requirements. He also emphasized collaboration with the counties. He recognized that counties need the flexibility to implement measures with consideration to the unique needs of each island’s communities. “However,” Governor Ige noted, “as was witnessed with the beach closure orders, more coordination is necessary to avoid confusion.”
County and state government agencies and the mayors have been in constant communications with the Governor’s Office and the Hawai‘i Emergency Management Agency throughout the COVID-19 crisis. To ensure coordinated actions, the 6th Supplementary Proclamation directs county mayors to coordinate their proposed orders, proclamations, rules, and directives with the state. The governor stated, “The state does not want to assume county functions or take over the important tasks each county is undertaking in their respective communities. The directive is limited to coordination, so that we can reduce any confusion moving forward.”
Department of Health:
COVID-19 New Case Count at Three
Two O‘ahu residents and one resident diagnosed outside Hawai‘i brings the number of total coronavirus cases in the state to a total of 604 since Feb. 28, 2020.
Note the re-categorization of one case from Maui to O‘ahu due to data review and quality control checks.
Hawai‘i COVID-19 Counts as of 12:00 noon, April 25, 2020
For more tables please visit: https://health.hawaii.gov/docd/
MMMC & McDonald’s Cluster Updates
There is one new case associated with the cluster at Maui Memorial Medical Center, bringing the total of COVID-19 positive cases to a total of 57 people. 37 are staff members and 20 are patients. DOH is monitoring this cluster closely.
There are 36 cases associated with a cluster at three McDonald’s restaurants in Kailua-Kona, including 19 employees and 17 household contacts. DOH continues to monitor this cluster closely. Hawaiicovid19.com
Hawai‘i Tourism Authority:
On Friday, 467 people arrived in Hawai‘i including 118 visitors and 155 residents. This table shows the number of people who arrived by air from out of state yesterday and does not include interisland travel.
AIRPORT ARRIVALS FOR FRIDAY, APRIL 24, 2020
Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism
INTERISLAND AIRPORT ARRIVALS AND DEPARTURES FOR APRIL 22, 2020
Department of Transportation:
Traveler Quarantine Extended Due to Continued Daily Arrival of Visitors
DOT reports today that on most days about 100 visitors continue to arrive in Hawai‘i. On Friday it was 114. Governor Ige said, “This is why we’re extending the mandatory 14-day traveler-quarantine.” The Federal Aviation Administration has made it clear the State cannot shutdown all air traffic, which is prompting the department and other agencies to strengthen screening efforts to prevent visitors from violating the rule. When visitors arrive in the islands they will be temperature screened and required to provide a valid personal phone number and the phone number of their lodging for verification. If they don’t have a reservation or no one answers, the visitor will not be allowed to leave the airport. It’s believed enhanced measures will help reduce the number of visitors that violate the quarantine order. More details: https://hidot.hawaii.gov/blog/2020/04/24/improved-verification-process-implemented-for-airline-passengers/
Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs:
State Issues Warning About Investment Schemes Circulating on Social Media
The DCCA Office of the Securities Commissioner is warning people about investment schemes that are circulating on popular social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Social media connections can provide scammers with the opportunity to reach large numbers of potential investors and make quick money. The schemes being perpetrated are simply old scams wrapped in a new package. Ofttimes, the underlying scam is a Ponzi or Pyramid Scheme. If you have been solicited, or if you have any information regarding the “Loom”, “Octagon Game” or other pyramid scheme and/or its promoters, contact the Securities Enforcement Branch at (808) 586-2740, toll free at 1-877-HI-SCAMS, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please leave a message and someone will get back to you as soon as possible.
For more information, including fraud prevention tips: https://cca.hawaii.gov/sec/iep/.
Department of Human Services:
Update on SNAP/Financial and Medicaid Applications Processed
The Department of Human Services (DHS) has been processing an unprecedented number of SNAP/Financial and Medicaid applications. Between March 23 and April 16 DHS has received 7,528 SNAP/Financial applications. 7,238 have been approved with an average two-day processing time. DHS has also received 13,425 Med-QUEST applications in the month of April, a 40% increase from this same time last year. DHS has a comprehensive listing that highlights the impact that the Unemployment Insurance and the Stimulus funds will have on eligibility. Access it here: https://humanservices.hawaii.gov/communications-2/