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Tuesday, September 21, 2021
Ban on large gatherings extended through Oct. 19
By News Release @ 11:14 PM :: 910 Views :: Honolulu County, COVID-19

Suspension of large gatherings extended through Oct. 19, 2021

New Response Plan launched for greater flexibility in adapting to current conditions

News Release from City and County of Honolulu, Sept 20, 2021

HONOLULU – The City and County of Honolulu is announcing an extension to the suspension of large organized gatherings on O‘ahu through Oct. 19, 2021. COVID-19 case counts and hospitalizations have improved since the initial suspension began Aug. 25, 2021, however the strain on the State’s medical infrastructure is too severe to lift or modify the large gathering restriction.

“While we see improvement in the number case counts and hospitalizations in the last week, in consultation with the state, we determined it is still too early to allow large gatherings again,” said Mayor Rick Blangiardi. “We will continue working to build confidence in the community through common sense measures and ask that the community make smart decisions to prevent risk of spread.”

To view Mayor Blangiardi’s amended order and proclamation please visit LINK.

In addition, the City is working to streamline COVID-19 mitigation efforts by implementing a new initiative called the Safe O‘ahu Response Plan. This new initiative allows greater flexibility to adjust based on current conditions; designed to protect the overall public health while combatting COVID-19. It replaces the initial tier system framework, which was launched a year ago on Sept. 23, 2020.

The purpose of the Safe O‘ahu Response Plan (Response Plan) is to inform the public of the following:

  • City’s overall goals
  • The principal metrics considered by the City in responding to the evolving pandemic
  • The risk factors and characteristics of activities, businesses, and operations that the City considers when evaluating the potential loosening and tightening of restrictions

This Response Plan is based on increased knowledge of, and about, disease transmission, vulnerability, risk factors, community compliance, access and administration of COVID-19 vaccines, the impact of COVID-19 variants, effective treatment options, current risk of COVID-19 related hospitalizations, and healthcare system capacity.  The Response Plan is purposefully flexible to enable the City to respond to the ever changing COVID-19 pandemic, and is driven by the following three goals:

Protect the public health and our healthcare system
Allow businesses to operate safely and day-to-day life to continue safely
Provide simple, clear, and consistent orders for the public to follow

The Response Plan will be guided by consideration of metrics that have always guided the City’s response to the pandemic, including reported COVID-19 cases per day (which informs projected hospitalizations), COVID-19 case positivity rate, percentage of fully vaccinated people, healthcare system capacity (including hospitalizations, ICU beds, ventilators, staffing, etc.), all with consideration of the economic impact of restrictions imposed.

However, the loosening and tightening of restrictions will no longer be tied to one or two rigid metrics.  Instead, the City, in consultation with healthcare professionals, including the State of Hawai‘i Department of Health (and with consideration of current CDC guidelines), will loosen and tighten restrictions as appropriate from time to time based on all of the available metrics and the current circumstances. The tightening of restrictions in particular will be for defined periods of time, in the hopes that such actions will have a positive impact on the guiding metrics and the restrictions will be in place as briefly as is safe.

These changes will generally be consistent with the City’s movement through the prior tier system (the Original Framework) in that riskier businesses and activities are allowed open and to operate when deemed relatively safe to do so.  And the categories of designated businesses and operations will generally remain the same to promote consistency and predictability.

For more information regarding the new Response Plan please visit: LINK

O‘ahu residents are encouraged to visit https://www.oneoahu.org/ for more information and access to resources. The City’s COVID-19 information call center remains open every day from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., except on holidays. People can call the 768-CITY (2489) information hotline or email covidresponse@honolulu.gov.

—PAU—

SA:  VIDEO: Mayor Blangiardi extends restrictions on large gatherings until Oct. 19, ends Honolulu’s COVID-19 tier system

HNN:  City extends ban on large gatherings, saying case counts are still too high

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