23 new COVID-19 cases reported on the Big Island

Hawaii County Civil Defense has reported today 23 new cases of COVID-19 on the Big Island.

“We are seeing an increase of cases associated with gatherings during Thanksgiving,” Civil Defense said. “This emphasizes the importance of following the preventative measures when you gather to celebrate the holidays.”

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Those who are not feeling well should stay home, but those who attend celebrations should wear a face mask and wash hands with soap and water.

The state Department of Health reported 123 new cases statewide today, bringing the total number of cases reported in Hawaii since the start of the pandemic to 18,864.

The DOH also reported today the first positive COVID-19 case in an adult resident of Kalaupapa Settlement in Kalawao County.

The county, located on the north shore of Molokai, is under the management of the DOH and was reported to be the last county in the United States with COVID-19 cases, the department said in a news release.

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According to the DOH, the individual received their positive test result after returning on a local flight to the Kalaupapa Settlement and is in isolation with no symptoms.

Kalaupapa Settlement once served as the home for individuals who were forced to relocate under Hawaii laws for the isolation of Hansen’s Disease patients, the DOH said. When the state abolished the law in 1969, former patients that chose to remain were guaranteed by law that they could continue living in Kalaupapa with the care and support of the state.

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