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New overflow testing at Lihu‘e Pharmacy, 43 new cases Friday

LIHU‘E — The demand for COVID-19 testing created a traffic congestion situation at the Lihu‘e Pharmacy located on Kolopa Street behind the Safeway store in the Hokulei Shopping Village.

Police dispatch reported calls from concerned motorists and bystanders over the past several days leading to a resolution of the situation.

“Right now, the parking lot back of the Target store closest to Kalepa Street is the overflow parking for COVID testing,” said Josh Pajela, the Kukui Grove Center Operations manager. “I believe clients need to check-in at the Lihu‘e Pharmacy and once that’s done, they come to the Target back parking lot to wait.”

Lily Beth Aguilar, on duty with Jennifer Macalma, Friday morning confirmed Pajela’s belief.

“People wanting the COVID test need to have an appointment scheduled,” Aguilar said. “When they get here, we confirm their appointment. Then, they can wait in the line that moves when space is available at the pharmacy test site. We’re in constant communication with the pharmacy so there is no long wait. We just need this space to get cars off the road.”

Aguilar said there are plans to have a complete test site set up in the parking lot behind the Target store.

“Everything depends on getting the approval from the Department of Health,” she said. “For now, we’re offering testing by appointment, seven days a week. But, we will be closed on Christmas and New Year’s day.”

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Friday, the Hawai‘i State Department of Health Kaua‘i District Health Office announced 43 new cases of COVID-19.

These cases consist of four visitors and 39 residents.

Of the 43 new cases, three are children and 40 are adults.

Twenty-three of the cases are related to travel, 16 mainland and seven interisland. The remaining 20 cases are considered community-acquired. Twelve of the community-acquired infections are close contacts of a previously announced case or are tied to an active cluster. The remaining eight cases have no known source of infection. One of the cases did not receive their positive test result until after their arrival on Kaua‘i.

Friday’s cases bring the number of active cases to 189, with four hospitalized.

In observance of Christmas Day, there will be no COVID-19 update, according to officials. Kaua‘i cases for Friday and Saturday will be reported on Sunday.

To date, the county has recorded 3,584 cumulative cases.
Source: The Garden Island

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