DOH: 277 COVID-19 cases today, 23 on Hawaii Island; two more Oahu men die

The state Department of Health reports 277 new COVID-19 cases today, with 23 of them on Hawaii Island.

Another two deaths are reported, both Oahu men, bringing the coronavirus-related death toll statewide to 51. According to DOH, one victim was in his 50s, the other in his 60s, and both had underlying health conditions.

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The Big Island has reported 243 cases since the beginning of the pandemic, and Hawaii County Civil Defense reported earlier today there are 71 active COVID-19 cases and 10 are hospitalized.

The City and County of Honolulu reported 245 new cases today for a cumulative total of 6,626 cases.

Maui has eight newly reported cases today for a cumulative total of 311.

Another Hawaii resident outside the state reportedly tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the number of out-of-state reports to 24, and the number of total cases statewide to 7,260.

Health officials are expressing concerns about the growing number of cases in Hawaii and Maui counties.

“Along with our county partners, we are closely monitoring these trends. We have concerns that ongoing gatherings, especially with inconsistent mask use or distancing, are contributing,” said state Epidemiologist Dr. Sarah Park.

On Hawaii Island, two recent large gatherings are of particular concern: a beach gathering and a large funeral. Social media videos from the funeral showed people not physically distancing or wearing masks.

More than 500 tests have been reportedly administered to people who attended the funeral with additional testing planned.

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There is also a cluster at Hilo’s Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home.

Clusters on Maui include cases at an assisted living facility and new cases associated with a hospital.

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