The Hawai‘i State Department of Health Kaua‘i District Health Office reported 13 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, July 30.
Today’s cases include one visitor and 12 residents. Of the thirteen, three are children and 10 are adults. Five of the cases are related to mainland travel. The remaining eight cases are considered community-acquired. Four of the community-acquired infections are close contacts of previously announced cases. The other four have no known source of infection.
All active cases are in isolation, and close contacts are being identified, offered testing, and directed to quarantine. Investigations are ongoing.
“Today’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announcements tell us two important things. First, evidence continues to mount that vaccination provides strong protection from severe disease, hospitalization, and death. These are excellent reasons to get vaccinated. Second, there is now evidence that even those who are fully vaccinated can spread COVID-19 to others if they become infected,” said Dr. Janet Berreman, Kaua‘i District Health Officer. “This is a reminder that we all need to continue to be careful: wear masks indoors—as is mandated statewide in Hawai‘i—and get tested after travel or after close contact with someone with COVID 19. Fortunately, testing and vaccination are widely available for free on Kaua‘i.”
Today’s cases bring the number of active cases to 60, with two hospitalized, and 600 cumulative cases. Kaua‘i’s cumulative case count includes 553 confirmed locally, three probable, and 44 positive cases diagnosed elsewhere, as they received their pre-travel test results after arriving on island.
If you have symptoms or are feeling sick, you should isolate yourself immediately, stay away from household members, and not go out – including to work or school – unless you are seeking testing or getting health care. Those who have been vaccinated should still be tested if they believe they may have been exposed or if they feel sick.
The Kaua‘i District Health Office team continues to investigate thoroughly every case reported on Kaua‘i. Staff interviews everyone who tests positive to get information about how they may have become infected and who they may have exposed during their infectious period. Each person who is identified as a close contact is called by one of our contact tracers, and notified of their exposure. They are instructed to monitor for symptoms, and are offered testing. All unvaccinated close contacts are instructed to quarantine. KDHO staff is in daily contact with cases and close contacts for the duration of their isolation or quarantine periods.
This is a labor-intensive but effective core public health approach to disease control, and we are fortunate to have been able to continue robust case investigation and contact tracing.
Many cases are in residents who have traveled. If you plan a trip, please be vaccinated before you go. And whether or not you are vaccinated, follow Hawai‘i’s prudent rules and wear a mask in crowded indoor settings. Finally, please get tested 3 to 5 days after you return to Kaua‘i.
Vaccination is free and widely available on the island, including on weekends and evenings and pop-up vaccination opportunities at community sites. Many vaccination sites accept walk-ins. Residents aged 18 and older are eligible for any vaccine available at pharmacy, hospital, and clinic locations. The Pfizer vaccine has been authorized for use in those 12 years of age and older, and are currently available at Wilcox Medical Center, Līhu‘e Longs, and Līhu‘e Safeway. For details on the vaccination sites, visit www.kauai.gov/vaccine.
Free testing is available at the Convention Hall, weekdays, from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on a first-come, first-served basis. Additionally, a free mobile testing van is available for walk-ins from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Kekaha Neighborhood Center on Wednesdays, Kīlauea Neighborhood Center on Thursdays, Kalāheo Neighborhood Center on Fridays, Hanalei Neighborhood Center on Saturdays, and Kapa‘a Neighborhood Center on Sundays. Testing performed at the Convention Hall and through the mobile testing van is rapid PCR. Same-day results are sent via email.
Testing is also available through your primary care physician, a hospital, or an urgent care clinic. Contact those providers directly for more information. For more details, visit https://www.kauai.gov/covidtest.
For more information on the county’s COVID-19 response, visit www.kauai.gov/COVID-19.