Update on May 2, 2022: Contact tracers are focusing their attention on priority groups including COVID-19 clusters associated with schools and high-risk settings such as long-term care facilities. We will continue offering general and setting-specific guidance to help protect vulnerable populations.
Investigation teams work hard to trace the spread of COVID-19. The Department of Health has contact tracers working on Oahu and the neighbor islands of Hawaii, Maui, and Kauai.
The Department of Health follows three principles in making reopening recommendations.
Surveillance and Detection
- Healthcare providers and laboratories are required to report all cases of COVID-19 to the Hawaii Department of Health
- Trends and patterns in disease occurrence are identified using existing disease surveillance programs
- COVID-19 Sentinel Surveillance – Monitoring the virus with testing
Case Investigation and Isolation
- Case investigators interview the case to find out if the person became infected in Hawaii or while visiting another area.
- Investigators advise the case to isolate from others while they are contagious
- Isolation and Quarantine Guidance (PDF)
- Investigators work with the case to identify anyone with whom they have had close contact while they were contagious
- Close contacts that were identified are notified by either the case or the contact tracer and instructed to remain at home (self-quarantine) for 10 days
- Stopping COVID-19 in its tracks – What does a contact tracer do?
- Close contacts of cases who develop symptoms should be tested for COVID-19.
Preparation and Prevention
- We issue advisories for the medical community to inform hospitals and providers on current COVID-19 recommendations.
- We communicate regularly with local partners in the travel industry and schools to address concerns and ensure the latest and most accurate guidance and information are being shared with their staff.