Hawaii health officials reported 168 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, marking a triple-digit increase after three consecutive days of fewer than 100 cases confirmed in the islands.

All new diagnoses were verified by state health officials to be on Oahu except for 13 in Hawaii County and one on Maui. Two coronavirus-related deaths were reported on Oahu and a third was confirmed on Hawaii island.

Oahu is moving toward reopening some businesses and will allow gatherings of up to five people beginning Thursday. Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell announced Tuesday a new framework to guide reopening Oahu going forward based on two metrics: the average number of daily cases reported and the average number of tests that return positive for COVID-19 each week, known as the county’s positivity rate.

According to the new framework, if Oahu has a seven-day average of more than 100 cases a day and a seven-day average positivity rate of 5% or higher, it will be subject to more severe restrictions, and if cases stay an average of fewer than 20 per week, with fewer than 1% of tests returning positive, it indicates public health and health care systems can handle the outbreak

According to DOH, the percent positivity is most ideal when it is below 5%. The department uses a rolling seven-day average to account for fluctuations in test value, lags in processing or reporting.

A closer look at Oahu’s testing data show 2.6% of approximately 279,000 COVID-19 tests performed on Oahu returned positive during the past week. That compares to a positivity rate of approximately 2% of COVID-19 diagnostic tests returning positive statewide.

Data from the Department of Health show Oahu had an average of 97 cases per day as of Tuesday. Wednesday’s new cases ticked up the average weekly case rate to about 107 new cases reported daily, according to Civil Beat’s log.

Honolulu’s seven-day COVID-19 case average was 97 as of Tuesday. This metric will guide future coronavirus response policy on the island. Department of Health

The death reported in Hawaii County Wednesday was associated with an outbreak of COVID-19 cases at Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home in Hilo. To date, 28 coronavirus related deaths have been tallied for Hawaii County — almost all of which are at the nursing home for veterans.

The 95-bed Okutsu facility has reported 70 residents diagnosed with COVID-19 as of Tuesday, 23 of whom have recovered. The rest are either hospitalized or still there.

Half of all coronavirus cases in Hawaii to date have been among people under the age of 40, and nearly 10% — or 1,172 cases — have been children under the age of 17. Only three children have been hospitalized to date. More than half of all hospitalizations and fatalities related to COVID-19 in Hawaii to date have been among people older than 60.

Nationally this week the U.S. topped 200,000 deaths related to COVID-19.

For more information, check the Hawaii Department of Health COVID-19 site and the Hawaii Data Collaborative COVID-19 Tracking site.

Cases, Deaths And COVID-19 Testing In Hawaii

COVID-19 Cases
Tests Performed

Hawaii COVID-19 Cases By County

Daily New COVID-19 Cases

Number Of Confirmed COVID-19 Cases In U.S.

COVID-19 Cases Worldwide

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