Hawai‘i COVID-19 Daily News Digest August 20, 2020

Posted on Aug 20, 2020 in COVID-19

Governor’s Office:

Governor Ige extends COVID-19 emergency period through September

Governor Ige extended sympathies and condolences to the family and friends of the two latest victims to pass from COVID-19, noting that each and every death is a tragedy for all of Hawai‘i. At a news briefing this afternoon the governor announced that he has signed a twelfth supplementary emergency proclamation that extends the COVID-19 emergency period through Sept. 30. This proclamation leaves in place the 14-day mandatory quarantine requirement for out-of-state travelers and the inter-island travel quarantine only for travelers arriving in the counties of Kaua‘i, Hawai‘i, Maui and Kalawao (Kalaupapa). The proclamation also empowers the counties to establish an Enhanced Movement Quarantine (EMQ) through agreements with resort or hotel facilities (further details below). Participating travelers would be required to stay in clearly defined geographical areas and ensure limited contact with those not subject to self-quarantine.

“We continue to work on digitizing and refining the travel screening process as well as developing enforceable, safe alternatives to self-quarantine,” said Gov. Ige.

The proclamation also:

  • Mandates that all persons must wear masks in compliance with the county orders, rules and directives approved by the governor.
  • Extends the prohibition on evictions for non-payment of rent until Sept. 30.

Governor’s Twelfth Proclamation for COVID-19 can be found at https://governor.hawaii.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/2008089-ATG_Twelfth-Proclamation-COVID-19-distribution-signed.pdf

Details on Enhanced Movement Quarantine 

Kaua‘i Mayor Derek Kawakami joined Governor Ige virtually, for today’s news briefing, to discuss the Enhanced Movement Quarantine, included the 12th Emergency Proclamation. Existing trans-Pacific and inter-island mandatory self-quarantine orders remain in effect until Sept. 30, 2020. The Enhanced Movement Quarantine (EMQ), to be established by each individual county, provides residents and visitors the ability to spend time on other islands without being in 14-day traveler quarantine. Key provisions of the EMQ include: 

  • Counties can establish EMQ programs through agreements with resort or hotel facilities.  
  • Travelers who enter the State as part of an EMQ program must comply with all State, county and industry safety and health standards applicable to such program and complete all mandatory documentation.  
  • EMQ restricts participating travelers to clearly defined geographical areas and ensures limited contact with those not subject to self-quarantine. Geographical areas may include adjacent shoreline areas where beach access is permitted by relevant state and county authorities, provided that members of the public are given notice of the EMQ and are not prohibited from accessing the shoreline area. 
  • Includes safety, monitoring and enforcement measures. 
  • Provides capacity for isolating any positive or suspected COVID-19 cases and provides necessary wraparound services (food, necessities, etc.) for such persons. 
  • Requires participating travelers to sign waivers confirming they have voluntarily elected to participate in the EMQ, voluntarily agree to electronic monitoring and other requirements and voluntarily waive express privacy protections, including to health information, as necessary to accomplish public health purposes. 
  • Requires participating travelers to bear all costs related to their participating in the EMQ, including monitoring, isolation, care, lodging and other expenses.          

Mayor Kawakami’s Vision for EMQ or Resort Bubble Concept

“We are stuck between a rock and a hard place when it comes to balancing our physical and economic health, and clearly health and safety are paramount. We know the 14-day quarantine has helped keep the virus at bay, but that comes with a cost,” Mayor Kawakami explained during today’s news briefing. The mayor encouraged Governor Ige to look for active ways to re-introduce visitors to Hawai‘i, while protecting residents. He added, “At a certain point we need to learn to co-exist with this virus and the EMQ or “Resort Bubble” is just one step in the staged approach for a broader opening of travel. Kawakami said the concept is very much a work in progress, but he is excited to get the project up and running, though not before it is properly vetted. Factors under consideration include; working with resorts that are willing to meet all safety and security measures and requirements; and testing of a geo-fencing electronic quarantine monitor. Mayor Kawakami said EMQ should make enforcement of quarantine measures more manageable, but ultimately the concept comes down to protecting ourselves and resort staffs. “Technology is not a replacement for human behavior,” he added.

Maui Mayor on Lānaʻi Residents Passing

Mayor Michael Victorino extends his condolences to the family of the Lānaʻi resident, who passed away due to COVID-19. “Joycelyn and I are heartbroken to lose another member of our Maui County community due to COVID-19,” Mayor Victorino said. “We want to express our deepest condolences to the family and our entire Lānaʻi community, and ask everyone to surround them with love and prayers. “This virus has been one of the most challenging issues we have ever faced and it will take a collective effort by all of us to limit its spread. I ask everyone to continue doing your part to protect others and caring for your loved ones.”

Victorino announces delay of television show production amid surge in COVID-19 cases

Mayor Victorino also announced today, that production on the television show Temptation Island has been delayed due to current COVID-19 health and safety concerns in Maui County.

“After speaking with the production company, Andaz Maui at Wailea Resort, the ILWU hotel worker union and our County Film Office, we all agreed to delay production of the show at this time. This was a very difficult decision due to the financial impacts to our local union film workers and hotel workers as well as to the film production company. However, considering the recent surge in cases on our island, all parties agreed to delay show production.”

“We appreciate the leadership of Andaz, ILWU, IATSE Local 665, the production team and the Governor’s Office for working with our office to address these concerns. We look forward to supporting the film production and other projects for our local workers and economy once case numbers decrease in our community,” Victorino added.


Department of Health: 

Two More Deaths and 236 New Cases of COVID-19

An O‘ahu man, older than 60-years-old and a Lānaʻi man, 40-59 years old raise Hawai‘i’s COVID-19 death toll to 45. The O‘ahu victim had an underlying health condition, was hospitalized and passed away on August 15. The Lānaʻi man also had underlying health conditions and had been hospitalized on Maui. His death is believed to be travel related. 230 of the newly reported COVID-19 cases today are on O‘ahu, with five (5) on Hawai‘i island and one (1) from Maui for a total of 236 new cases. 

Hawai‘i COVID-19 Counts as of 12:00 noon, August 20, 2020    

Island of Diagnosis    

New Cases    

Reported since    

2/28/2020    

(including new cases)    

O‘ahu    

230

5,340 

Hawai‘i    

5

164 

Maui   

1

261

Kaua‘i   

0

54 

Moloka‘i    

0

2  

Lana‘i    

0

0  

HI residents diagnosed outside of HI   

0  

23  

Total Cases    

236

5,844++ 

Deaths    

2

45

++ As a result of updated information, one case from Maui was recategorized to O‘ahu, and one case from O‘ahu was removed from the counts. 

Hospitalization count as of 8/19/20 at 5:30 pm: 3-Hawai‘i, 16-Maui, 144-O‘ahu,2-Kaua‘i  

Laboratory* Testing Data    

There were 2,512 additional COVID-19 tests reported via electronic laboratory reporting. 

Total Number of Individuals Tested by Clinical and State Laboratories    

Positive    

Negative    

171,184**    

5,844

165,317  

*Electronic Laboratory Reporting **23  test results were inconclusive    

HawaiiCOVID19.com

COVID-19 Epidemic Curve Hawaii August 20, 2020

For more tables, charts and visualizations visit the DOH Disease Outbreak Control Division: https://health.hawaii.gov/coronavirusdisease2019/what-you-should-know/current-situation-in-hawaii


Hawai‘i Tourism Authority: 

July 2020 Hawai‘i Hotel Performance Report  

Hawai‘i hotels across the state continued to report substantially lower revenue per available room (RevPAR), average daily rate (ADR), and occupancy last month compared to July 2019 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. According to HTA, statewide RevPAR in July 2020 decreased to $36 (-86.0%), ADR fell to $174 (-42.7%), and occupancy declined to 20.9 percent (-64.4 percentage points). During July, all passengers arriving from out-of-state were required to abide by a mandatory 14-day self-quarantine, but interisland travelers did not have to quarantine. 

https://www.hawaiitourismauthority.org/media/5085/hawaii-hotel-performance-07-2020.pdf


Department of Labor and Industrial Relations: 

State Releases Updated Unemployment Insurance Information  

DLIR updated unemployment insurance claims information Thursday, including paying $2,829,332,666 since the onset of the COVID-19 Pandemic on March 1, 2020. DLIR Acting Director Anne Eustaquio said, “We are still experiencing a significant increase of workers still attached to an employer being fully released from employment. These individuals will need to report the separation when filing a weekly claim certification. Claimants can review the correct way to do this at https://labor.hawaii.gov/ui/main/reactivate-your-claim-and-report-job-seperation/ before filing their weekly claim certification.”  

The department has hired forty-nine staff to help process regular unemployment insurance claims since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. The department is currently interviewing and hiring an additional forty-one staff to process both regular unemployment insurance as well as Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) claims. 

http://labor.hawaii.gov/blog/news/state-releases-updated-unemployment-insurance-information-10/ 

Hawai‘i’s Unemployment Rate at 13.1-Percent in July 

DLIR announced Thursday that the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for July was 13.1-percent compared to the revised rate of 13.4 percent in June. Statewide, 551,750 were employed and 83,250 unemployed in July for a total seasonally adjusted labor force of 635,000. Nationally, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 10.2-percent in July, down from 11.1-percent in June. To view more: 

http://labor.hawaii.gov/blog/news/hawaiis-unemployment-rate-at-13-1-in-july/ 

Please note due to the State Holiday, the next edition of the Daily News Digest will be on Monday, August 24, 2020. Mahalo!

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PDF: COVID-19 Daily News Digest August 20, 2020