04/06/2020: COVID-19 Coronavirus Response Update

COVID-19 Coronavirus Response Update

April 6, 2020
I hope you all had a safe and restful weekend. Here’s a quick update.
Stay-at-home orders are in full effect in Hawai‘i. In addition to social distancing, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone wear a mask to help prevent the spread of the virus.
While N95 and surgical masks should be prioritized for our frontline healthcare workers, first responders, and their support staff, there are other types of masks, including cloth masks, that should be worn when you are outside of your home. The CDC has tips on how to wear a face cloth face covering.
Of course, be sure to disinfect or wash your reusable masks immediately when not being worn!
You can visit my COVID-19 resources webpage which continues to be updated with new information that may be of help to you.
If you have any questions or if you are in need of assistance, please call me at (808) 541-1986 or email me at TulsiOffice@mail.house.gov.
Mahalo and be well,
Tulsi Gabbard
Member of Congress (HI-02)

Sign Up Today for Wednesday's Tele-Town Hall

Telephone Town Hall | COVID-19 Update # 4
Wednesday, April 8 at 4:00 p.m. Hawai‘i Time
Sign up via my website by Tuesday, April 7th OR
join the call by calling (888) 476-4187 at 4:00pm 

2020 Census — How to Respond Online Without a Census ID

There’s still time to respond to the census! This is critical to ensure our population count is accurate so that we get the Federal funding we need to meet the needs of the people of Hawaii.  You may respond online or via phone, whether you have received your census ID number in the mail or not. When responding online without an ID, there are three options for entering an address:
  • Street Address
  • Rural Route Address
  • Other Address/Physical Location
You can read the complete instructions on the 2020census.gov website.

HHS Directs More Funds to Testing

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced upcoming action by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to provide $186,000,000 in funding for additional resources to build up the nation’s screening and testing regime response to the COVID-19 pandemic. HHS Secretary Azar noted that the funds would help frontline state and county public health officials build local testing and surveillance abilities.

FTC Warns the Public of Coronavirus Scams

As the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic impacts the U.S., phone scammers have seized the opportunity to prey on consumers. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has received reports of scam and hoax text message campaigns and scam robocalls offering free home testing kits, promoting bogus cures, selling health insurance, and preying on virus-related fears. The FCC has a webpage dedicated to educating you about these scams and ways you can better prepare yourself against them.

CDC Recommendations for Talking with Children about the Coronavirus

With a firm stay-at-home order in place, continued social distancing measures in full effect, and COVID-19 making the news, children may have questions about the situation. Parents, family members, school staff, and other trusted adults can play an important role in helping children make sense of what they hear in a way that is honest, accurate, and minimizes anxiety or fear. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a webpage with advice about how to talk to children about the coronavirus pandemic. 
  • Remain calm and reassuring.
  • Make yourself available to listen and to talk.
  • Avoid language that might blame others and lead to stigma.
  • Pay attention to what children see or hear on television, radio, or online.
  • Provide information that is honest and accurate.
  • Teach children everyday actions to reduce the spread of germs.

And remember...

The federal income tax filing and payment deadline has been postponed until July 15, 2020. Learn more about what the IRS is doing during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

COVID-19 Hawai‘i News

Testing in Hawai‘i — To date, there are 387 individuals in Hawai‘i who have tested positive for COVID-19. There were 16 new cases since yesterday. Of the 387 cases, 26 remain hospitalized and 89 have been released from isolation.
Maui County Launches New COVID-19 Website — The County of Maui is encouraging everyone to adhere to social distancing measures to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus as the second COVID-19 case was reported on Molokai over the weekend. The County is also launching a new website to provide a centralized portal of COVID-19 related information geared to Maui residents.
Kaua‘i Reminds People to Balance Mental and Physical Health — In its latest video update, the County of Kaua‘i notes that KPD continues to enforce the Governor’s stay-at-home order. While you can exercise outdoors or walk your dog — maintaining social distancing and taking additional precautions like wearing masks — hanging out and sunbathing are not covered in the stay-at-home exemption. As Mayor Kawakami aptly notes, the coronavirus does not travel on its own!
Don’t Forget, Testing Twice a Week on the Big Island — The testing clinic will operate Mondays and Thursdays from 8:00 a.m. to 12noon and is located at the Keauhou Shopping Center.
These free clinics are open to the public. However, individuals must first undergo a screening to determine if they meet the criteria to be tested. Clinic physicians on site will make the determination regarding testing. The screening criteria will be based on the guidance of the CDC and the State’s COVID-19 Response Task Force.
To bypass the screening queue, patients can go to Pathways Telehealth by calling (808) 747-8321 option 5 to be screened and expedite testing. People who visit the screening clinic will be asked to show photo ID. Additionally, people are requested to bring any health insurance cards they have, although insurance is not required.

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