COVID Still Circulating
By Catherine Cluett Pactol | Editor
After a couple of months with few COVID cases, the Department of Health reported five new COVID cases on Molokai in the week between Wednesday, April 6 and Wednesday, April 13. There have been 955 cases on Molokai since the pandemic began. Case statistics are now only available on a weekly basis from the DOH. Statewide, there were 1327 new cases during the same period.
Masks are no longer required indoors by state mandate, though most stores on Molokai continue to recommend them. It is the decision of private businesses whether or not to continue a policy of asking customers to wear masks on premises. The Hawaii Dept. of Education still requires masks to be worn indoors at schools.
And though Hawaii’s safe travels program has been discontinued, no longer requiring incoming residents and visitors to be vaccinated, show a negative test prior to arrive or quarantine, masks continue to be required across the country while on public transportation and indoors in U.S. transportation hubs, including on airplanes. Originally set to expire this month, the TSA emergency directive will remain in effect last least through May 3.
“CDC continues to monitor the spread of the Omicron variant, especially the BA.2 subvariant that now makes up more than 85 percent of U.S. cases,” stated the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) last week. “Since early April, there have been increases in the seven-day moving average of cases in the U.S. The CDC Mask Order remains in effect while CDC assesses the potential impact of the rise of cases on severe disease, including hospitalizations and deaths, and healthcare system capacity. TSA will extend the security directive and emergency amendment for 15 days, through May 3, 2022.”