Holiday gatherings return but caution urged

holiday gatherings return but caution urged

Sumary of Holiday gatherings return but caution urged:

  • Hawaii, along with the rest of the nation, is once again facing the perils of another holiday season as the COVID-19 pandemic stretches on, but with cases in the islands trending lower in recent weeks, many health experts say this time around most people should be able to celebrate with loved ones — with caution.
  • The state Department of Health on Tuesday reported 63 new confirmed and probable coronavirus infections, bringing the state’s total since the start of the pandemic to 85,948 cases.
  • No new virus-related fatalities were reported, so the statewide COVID-19 death toll remained at 977. The new cases included 33 on Oahu, 14 on Hawaii island, seven on Maui, four on Kauai and five Hawaii residents diagnosed outside the state.
  • DOH also reported Tuesday 1,375 active cases statewide, an increase of nine from the previous tally.
  • Meanwhile, vaccination rates continue to climb, with DOH reporting that 72.2% of the state’s population is fully immunized and 84.5% have received at least one dose.
  • DOH epidemiologist Dr. Sarah Kemble said she recommends all those who have not yet done so to consider getting vaccinated against COVID-19 before traveling or gathering for the holidays.
  • Josh Green also shared that he felt families could safely gather once again for the holidays, especially outdoors but indoors as well for those who are vaccinated against COVID-19. Green also advised exercising and going for a walk outdoors with family members.
  • White House medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci echoed the comments of Hawaii health officials, saying that fully vaccinated family members should feel comfortable gathering this holiday season.

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