On Thursday the number of confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Hawaii jumped from 16 to 26 cases, state health officials said.

All 10 new cases were found by commercial laboratories that have conducted more than 1,000 tests. Eight of the cases involved Oahu residents and two involved Maui residents.

“All of our cases as far as we know have a travel history or are individuals who have been exposed to someone who has been traveling,” said Department of Health Director Bruce Anderson. “That’s significant. We believe at this time there’s no evidence of extensive community transmission in the state of Hawaii.”

Drive thru COVID 19 Specimen Collection Center at Straub Hospital.
All 10 new cases of the coronavirus announced Thursday were found by statewide testing via commercial private laboratories. Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2020

The Hawaii State Laboratories Division has focused on testing severely ill patients referred directly by physicians and has tested 40 to date.

The health department has also conducted random surveillance testing among samples for which they ruled out flu as a possible cause.  None of the tests conducted randomly have resulted in positive cases, Anderson said.

He did not say how many people were randomly tested.

It’s unclear whether the 10 new cases include Sen. Clarence Nishihara, who announced Thursday that he tested positive for COVID-19.

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