Free Voluntary Post-Arrival Testing Program Starts Monday for Traveling Residents
Kaua‘i County will be providing free post-arrival COVID-19 tests for Kaua‘i residents who travel out of state and receive a quarantine exemption via the state’s Safe Travels pre-testing program.
Since Mayor Derek S.K. Kawakami’s request for a mandatory post-arrival test was denied by Gov. David Ige, Kawakami is asking for residents to help to keep the community safe by participating in a voluntary post-arrival test program.
“We know that pre-testing will not catch every case of COVID-19,” Kawakami stated in a press release Friday. “The pre-test may happen too early in the course of infection to test positive, and a traveler may be exposed after the test or during their transit to the state.”
Kawakami explained that one of the safety issues the county is most passionate about creating is this post-arrival test for incoming travelers, particularly those flying from the mainland. The test is free for returning residents who’ve traveled to the mainland and have received a quarantine exemption with a negative pre-arrival test through the State’s Safe Travels program.
“Our residents pose a greater risk of introducing COVID-19 into our community because of the ways we interact with our families, household members, co-workers, friends, and neighbors,” Kawakami stated. “Please do your part in protecting our kupuna and other residents at high risk of severe disease by staying home and away from others as long as you can after your return, and then coming in to get a FREE COVID-19 test 4-10 days after your return.”
The free post-arrival testing center for Kaua‘i residents returning from out-of-state travel launches on Monday, Oct. 19, 2020, at the Kaua‘i War Memorial Convention Hall. Testing will be available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon. Closed Sundays.
To qualify for a free COVID-19 test, a returning resident must have participated in the state’s pre-travel testing program. Additionally, they must provide paper or electronic proof of an out-of-state boarding pass/trip confirmation along with a Hawaii ID. The resident must have been back on Kaua‘i for at least 72 hours prior to seeking testing at the free Post-Travel Testing site. Post-arrival testing is not available for interisland travelers at this time.
For mainland residents visiting Kaua‘i , voluntary post-arrival testing is available through American Medical Response, for a fee, at a different location and times. For more information on mainland resident post-testing, visit: www.kauai.gov/visitorposttest.
The post-arrival test offered by the County of Kaua‘i is a rapid point of care PCR test that looks for active infection. Participants will receive their results on the same day.
“While a second test adds an additional layer of protection, it will not succeed at capturing all cases of COVID-19,” Kawakami stated. “Please remember that you can still develop disease up to 14 days after your return. It is very important that you take extra precautions during the two weeks following your return to Kaua‘i by limiting your contact with others, always wearing your mask, and maintaining physical distance (greater than 6 feet) from anyone outside of your immediate household. If you become sick at any time during the 14 days after your return, even if you’ve had a negative test, contact your health care provider.”