In a concerning new development, Maui’s mayor is reporting a cluster of coronavirus cases involving at least 15 Maui Memorial Medical Center workers.

It wasn’t immediately clear how many patients the employees had close contact with.

Hawaii News Now has learned that some of those who tested positive work in the hospital’s hematology and oncology wards. The 15 workers who tested positive for COVID-19 are in self-isolation and Maui County said there are plans underway to move them to a quarantine site.

In a statement on Facebook, Mayor Mike Victorino said testing is being expedited to people associated with the workers and the governor has pledged his support to help control the spread of the virus.

Maui Mayor Mike Victorino speaks to joint WAM Finance committees.

Maui Mayor Mike Victorino said testing is being expedited to people associated with the 15 Maui Memorial Medical Center Workers.

Cory Lum/Civil Beat

“I want everyone to know that we’re all hands on deck right now,” he said.

“We will be looking at the cluster that has been formed and what we need to do that. The governor has assured me that help is on its way. Mahalo to everyone on the front lines of this pandemic.”

He added that the county is directing all available personal protective gear to the hospital.

Mike Rembis, CEO of Maui Health, which is affiliated with Kaiser Permanente, said the hospital is taking an “abundance of caution” approach and furloughing any employees who are showing symptoms.

“This is a focus of ours right now,” he said.

Civil Beat reporter Anita Hofschneider contributed reporting to this story.

An important ask . . .

Our evolution as a public service news organization over the past 10 years has prepared us for this moment in time, when what we do matters the most.

Many of you have supported Civil Beat from the beginning. We are deeply grateful to all of you for making this nonprofit news experiment possible.

As Civil Beat embarks on our summer fundraising campaign, we’re asking readers to contribute what you think we’re worth. Whether you’ve valued our public service journalism for 10 years or 10 days, now is the time we need you the most.

About the Author