10/02/2020: COVID-19 Coronavirus Response Update

COVID-19 Coronavirus Response Update

October 2, 2020
Yesterday, President Trump and the First Lady tested positive for COVID-19. I’m sending them aloha and best wishes for a speedy recovery.
This virus can impact all of us. We can do our part to keep ourselves and those around us safe. Practice physical distancing, wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth, wash your hands frequently, and maintain good hygiene.
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)

COVID-19 News & Resources

Testing in Hawai‘i — Since yesterday, the Department of Health reports a total of 87 new cases and 3 additional COVID-19 related deaths. There are currently 2,178 active cases in the state.
142 have died
880 required hospitalization
10,389 have been released from isolation
There have been 427,746 diagnostic tests conducted as of today.
As a result of updated information, one case was removed from the counts.
Tracing in Hawai‘i — The people of Hawai‘i should know how many active contact tracers there are on any given day, how many we have trained in reserve, what percentage of individuals with new infections they have contacted within 24 hours, and the state’s Infection Rate.
  • Number of Active Tracers = 300 (+12 from the previous week) *
  • Number of Trained Tracers in Reserve = 507 (-28 from the previous week) **
  • Percent of New Infections Whose Contacts are Traced within 24 Hours = ***
  • Infection Rate = ***, but COVID Act Now reports 0.93. (+0.02 since yesterday)
* The DOH only has weekly numbers. These are for the week of Sep. 28-Oct. 4
** The state only has weekly numbers. These are for the week of Sep. 7-Sep. 13. The updated dashboard no longer indicates for what time period this number is being reported. However, this is the same number that was reported for the week of Sep. 7-Sep. 13.
*** the DOH provides no information.
One of the key problems with data reporting in Hawai‘i continues to be the lack of frequently and consistently updated information about contact tracing. Right now, we are pulling data from two different webpages the state is using to report the data.
George Washington University reports that, given the number of infections and the rate of infection in Hawai‘i today, the state should have 653 active tracers. The GWU contact tracing tool can be found in the CDC’s guidance on contact tracing.
Looking for federal and state COVID-19 resources — including directions on dealing with UI and PUA, local food banks, testing sites, and economic recovery programs for small businesses? Visit gabbard.house.gov/COVID-19.
HHS Announces $20 Billion in New Phase 3 Provider Relief Funding — Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is announcing $20 billion in new funding for providers on the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic. Under this Phase 3 General Distribution allocation, providers that have already received Provider Relief Fund payments will be invited to apply for additional funding that considers financial losses and changes in operating expenses caused by the coronavirus. Previously ineligible providers, such as those who began practicing in 2020 will also be invited to apply, and an expanded group of behavioral health providers confronting the emergence of increased mental health and substance use issues exacerbated by the pandemic will also be eligible for relief payments. Providers can begin applying for funds on Monday, October 5, 2020.
Drive-Thru Flu Shots Available in Kaka‘ako This Weekend — In anticipation of an active flu season amidst a global pandemic, a drive-thru flu shot clinic will be held in the Kaka‘ako Waterfront Park parking lot on Cooke Street from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. (noon) on Saturday, Oct. 3 and Sunday, Oct. 4. The “Drive Through to Beat the Flu” clinic is available to everyone with or without insurance. Participants are asked to enter the event in their motor vehicle through the intersection of Ward Avenue and Ala Moana Boulevard. The first hour of these clinics (from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m.) is reserved for Seniors ages 65 years and older. Read the full announcement for more details and requirements.
Hawai‘i Restaurant Card Program to help Businesses, Farmers and the Unemployed Launched — Today the Governor announced the pending launch of the Hawai‘i Restaurant Card program. The Hawai‘i Restaurant Card is a prepaid debit card that will aid qualified Hawaii Unemployment Insurance recipients with supplemental funds they can use at island restaurants statewide. The Hawai‘i Restaurant Card is funded by the State of Hawai‘i as part of its Economic Relief Program. Qualified recipients will automatically receive this benefit beginning October 16, 2020. 
Hawai‘i County CARES Act Rent & Mortgage Assistance Program Expansion — The Hawai‘i County Rent and Mortgage Assistance Program (RMAP) announced today its six Hawai‘i Island-based nonprofit partners have disbursed more than $1.2 million in housing grants to 338 island households in the program’s first 4 weeks. The nonprofit partner organizations are now disbursing approximately $1 million per week and are on track to spend down $7.25 million by November 30, 2020. County residents who are at least 18 years old and lost income or work hours due to COVID-19 may be eligible for up to $2,000 per month for rent, lease, or mortgage payments. The previous grant limit was $1,000 per month. Learn more and apply here.

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