By Wendy Osher
The number of COVID-19 cases at the Maui Memorial Medical Center has risen to 28 as of noon today. Maui Health confirmed that there are 17 health care workers and 11 patients at Maui Memorial Medical Center who have tested positive for COVID-19.
The health care workers are in quarantine at home and the patients have been isolated in the hospital’s COVID-19 warm units.
Tracy Dallarda, Communications for Maui Health / Maui Memorial Medical Center said that like many hospitals around the state are experiencing a surge in cases, Maui is not different and is also seeing a surge as well. She noted that when there is community spread, there is also an increase in hospitalizations.
According to Maui Health, the focus continues to be on contact tracing, screening and testing.
Starting today, all patients will be tested who have not been tested in the last 24 hours. Also starting today, every single employee and every single provider is being tested according to Dallarda.
All admissions to the hospital will continue to unergo testing upon admission, and on day six again to ensure that patients are negative and identify individuals who may be asymptomatic, but could be carrying the virus.
According to Dallarda, Maui Health is expanding its criteria for Personal Protective Equipment use that exceeds both Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.
In addition to these precautions, the Maui hospital is also putting an immediate pause on all elective procedures and surgeries for the week. Hospital administrators say this is to maintain bed capacity if needed.
The newly reported cases reported since Aug. 13, 2020 are separate from an initial cluster reported earlier this year. During the initial wave of infection, the cluster of individuals linked to the initial Maui Health outbreak totaled 52 including 38 health care workers and 14 patients who had tested positive, according to previous reports. That cluster was declared “closed” on May 19, 2020.
Meantime, Hale Makua Health Services received word from the State of Hawaiʻi, Department of Health that one resident has tested positive for COVID-19 at Hale Makua Kahului and one Hale Makua Home Health patient has tested positive as well.
The state has reported another triple digit increase in new COVID-19 cases with 174 new cases on Monday including 163 on Oʻahu, nine on Maui and two on Hawaiʻi Island. This marks the 14th consecutive day that the daily count has been in the triple digits, with a record breaking 355 cases reported on Thursday. More than 96% of the active cases statewide are on the island of Oʻahu.
*Check back for updates to this developing story.