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Officials: Decline cases, high test positivity

LIHU‘E — While the county’s once again seeing a down-trend in COVID-19 infection case counts, it leads the state in per-population case rates and test-positivity rate.

As of Feb. 12, the state’s positivity rate is about 6.3%. Kaua‘i’s is 12.8%, according to the Hawai‘i Emergency Management Agency COVID-19 dashboard.

The county’s seven-day average daily case count dropped to below 67 cases a day, state Department of Helath Kaua‘i Deputy District Health Officer Lauren Guest reported Monday.

The state DOH KDHO reported 40 new cases Monday, bringing the number of active, recorded cases to 195, with nine hospitalized. According to HIEMA, two are in the intensive-care unit as of Monday.

“Our daily case count continued declining over the past week, which we hope is good news for the weeks to come,” Elton Ushio, administrator of the Kaua‘i Emergency Management Agency, said Monday during the county’s weekly COVID-19 briefing.

While cases are on the decline, the county did see five COVID-19-related fatalities last week, including four male kupuna residents, one in his 90s, one in his 80s and two in their 70s. The other death was of a female visitor in her 60s. To date, the county has recorded 24 COVID-19 related fatalities.

“This is a harsh reminder that we need to continue to take this virus seriously, for the most-vulnerable members of our community,” Ushio said. “Our hearts go out to the family and friends of these individuals. Their loved ones are in our prayers and have our deepest condolences.”

Last week, Gov. David Ige announced that a booster shot will not be required to be considered “fully vaccinated” for the state’s Safe Travels program, which allows travelers to bypass pre-testing or quarantining if they have a COVID-19 vaccination.

“While booster shots are not required for Safe Travels, health officials continue to recommend a third shot of Pfizer or Moderna to prevent severe illness from COVID-19,” Ushio said.

A free testing site at Kaua‘i War Memorial Conventional Hall in Lihu‘e is open weekdays except county holidays from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Free drive-up testing is also available through Lihu‘e Pharmacy by appointment, by visiting alohaclear.com.

For a full list of testing locations, visit kauai.gov/covidtest.

On Thursday, a mobile vaccine van will be open for walk-ins at the Kapa‘a Neighborhood Center from 1 to 5 p.m. for those aged 12 and older.

Ho‘ola Lahui Hawai‘i hosts a pop-up vaccine clinic on Saturday, Feb. 19, at Kanuikapono Public Charter School in Anahola from 9 to 11 a.m. This waslk-in clinic is open to everyone age 5 and older. Minors must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

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Sabrina Bodon, editor, can be reached at 245-0441 or sbodon@thegardenisland.com.
Source: The Garden Island

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