State health officials are investigating a possible cluster of COVID-19 cases in student housing at the University of Hawaii Manoa.

UH contact tracers identified 10 students who may be part of the cluster. Of those, eight had social contact with each other, according to a UH press release. Seven students associated with the cluster have tested positive since Thursday. 

Those seven students are from three different buildings on UH Manoa’s campus. A university spokesman declined to say what buildings those were, but said that all of the building occupants were notified of the positive cases.

UH Manoa Hale Aloha dorms. Ed note. missing 1 building, out of frame.
UH contact tracers and state health officials are investigating a possible cluster of COVID-19 cases in dorms. Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Six of the students who tested positive don’t have any in-person classes this semester, according to the university. The other student who tested positive attends a hybrid course but became infected after the last class meeting.

The 10 students in the cluster were moved to a hotel the university contracted with using federal relief funds to provide isolation rooms.

UH conducts surveillance testing of students in the dorms, but none of the positive cases were confirmed through that testing.

UH’s contact tracing team was able to identify the cluster of students based on self-reported data from a health screening app that students are required to log on to daily.

There have been 61 positive cases of COVID-19 at UH Manoa since April of last year. Twenty-five of those cases have come from on-campus housing.

Campus housing is at about 50% capacity for the spring semester with 1,400 students living in the dorms.

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