Encouraging Coronavirus Case Numbers Partly a Result of Testing Lag

The Hawai‘i Department of Health is reporting today, 87 new positive COVID-19 cases diagnosed on O‘ahu for a cumulative total of 2,197 cases in the state, reported since March. While this number is encouraging and lower than previous days, it also reflects a significant lag in the testing results. With many test specimens now being sent to mainland labs for processing, reporting of test results is delayed 5-7 days. This delay may make case numbers appear lower than actual disease activity. 

“Many of the cases reported recently are associated with social gatherings,” said Health Director Bruce Anderson. This month, multiple cases have been associated with a yoga class, fire station, funeral events, gyms, socializing at bars, and training events. Infections have been traced to workplaces including but not limited to a construction company and site, non-patient care areas of hospitals, social service organizations, nursing and care homes, retail establishments, warehouse, and delivery businesses. 

Multiple household and other cases are primarily associated with social interactions such as house parties, beach parties/gatherings, birthday parties, Father’s Day & 4th of July gatherings, religious functions, gathering to view sporting events, and co-workers socializing while off-duty. 

“Everyone should avoid close contact with others outside of their household members, crowded places, and large gatherings. Act as if everyone around you has the virus and can spread it,” said Anderson. DOH strongly encourages wearing face masks to protect yourself and others, physical distancing, and most importantly, stay at home and separate yourself from others to prevent exposing them if you do not feel well.  

New cases on O‘ahu are widespread and located in many areas including and not limited to: Hale‘iwa, Hau‘ula, Kāneʻohe, Lāʻie, Mililani, Wahiawa, Waimānalo, ‘Aiea, Ewa Beach, Honolulu proper, Kailua, Kapolei, Pearl City, Wai‘anae, and Waipahu. 

To protect the privacy of individuals, DOH does not release detailed information on its investigations unless there is an imminent risk to the public. 

Hawai‘i COVID-19 Counts as of 12:00 noon, August 1, 2020  

Island of Diagnosis   New Cases   Reported since   2/28/2020   (including new cases)  
O‘ahu   87  1842 
Hawai‘i   115 
Maui  168++ 
Kauai  47 
Moloka‘i  
Lana‘i  
HI residents diagnosed outside of HI  23 
Total Cases   87  2,197 
Deaths   26 

++As a result of updated information, one (1) case from Maui was removed from the counts. 

Laboratory* Testing Data   

There were 3,390 additional COVID-19 tests reported via electronic laboratory reporting. 

Total Number of Individuals Tested   by Clinical and State Laboratories   Positive   Negative  
126,641**   2,195  124,430 

*Electronic Laboratory Reporting **16 test results were inconclusive  

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