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Guidance for Everyone
DOH is leading an inter-agency collaborative effort to keep our community safe and healthy.
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Statewide Re-Opening and Recovery Plan

On June 10, 2020, the governor outlined that the quarantine requirement would be lifted for inter-island travelers. Passengers on inter-island flights are required to complete a new Travel and Health Form before boarding. Visit health.hawaii.gov/travel for more information.

The ninth supplementary emergency proclamation leaves in place the 14-day quarantine requirement for out-of-state travelers through July 31, 2020.

Hawaii businesses are gradually being allowed to open with physical distancing and safety measures in place. The state's Re-Opening and Recovery Plan is informed by health, economic, and community-based indicators and may vary by county.

 

Everyday Prevention

As healthcare provider offices reopen, many have put measures in place to protect patients and staff. Healthcare appointments, screenings, and immunizations serve as a first line of defense against serious illness and chronic diseases. Cancelling or delaying health services is especially dangerous for older adults and people with underlying health conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, asthma, or cancer. Here are a few tips to help navigate the new normal in healthcare visits:

  • Call, don’t cancel – if you have a scheduled appointment, call your healthcare provider to see if the appointment can be kept and what precautions are being taken.
  • Consider alternate healthcare delivery. Telehealth options may be available to you and vaccinations are provided at most pharmacies, saving you a trip to your healthcare provider’s office.
  • Be patient for routine care, but persistent for more urgent issues. Healthcare providers are facing a backlog of patients, but if you have a health concern, insist on being seen soon. For medical emergencies, seek immediate care and call 9-1-1.
  • For those without health insurance or who are unable to pay for healthcare services, call 2-1-1 or visit auw211.org for assistance. Free or low-cost services are available to those who qualify.
  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water for 20 seconds with this protective routine.
  • Disinfect mobile devices and keyboards regularly. They’re like a third hand!
  • Carry alcohol-based hand sanitizer for situations when soap and water are unavailable.
  • Shaka instead of handshake.
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands or after touching surfaces.
  • Cover cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw away. If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into a bent elbow.
  • Cloth face coverings are important to wear in public, and should be used with physical distancing to slow the spread of the virus. There are exceptions for young children or anyone who has trouble breathing.
  • Maintain a distance of 6+ ft , or two-arms' length, from others to prevent germs from spreading.
  • Avoid sharing drinks, food utensils and e-cigarettes with others.
  • Use a tissue or elbow to touch doorknobs, handrails, elevator buttons and crosswalk buttons. Learn more.
  • Secure an extra 30-days worth of prescription medications, if possible, and basic medications, such as aspirin or ibuprofen.
  • Buy a few extra shelf-stable foods, such as beans and grains, each time you shop. Please avoid hoarding so we have enough inventory for all residents.
  • Freeze and preserve meats, vegetables and bread so you have enough to last 14 days.
  • Store backup toothpaste, laundry detergent, bath tissue and cleaning supplies, but no more than 14 days’ supply to ensure our islands have enough for each household.

Since so much of our supply chain in Hawai‘i relies on goods shipped from out of state, it’s important to know what our harbors are doing to keep goods arriving to our islands while ensuring our shores are safe:

  • Any ship that has been to China in the last 14 days or that carries a person who has been to China in the last 14 days will be denied entry to Hawai‘i’s shores. Learn more.
  • Most non-passenger cargo ships typically take more than 14 days to travel from China to Honolulu. As long as all people on board are healthy upon arrival, cargo ships will continue to be allowed to enter Hawai‘i ports to deliver goods. Learn more.
  • According to the CDC, there is likely very low risk of spread from products or packaging that are shipped over a period of days or weeks at ambient temperatures, due to the poor survivability of coronaviruses on surfaces.
  • Hawai‘i shippers remain operational and maintain regular supplies of consumer goods.

Prepare backup plans in the event that:

  • Identify members of your household that may be at greater risk, such as older adults and people with severe chronic illnesses.
  • Speak with your neighbors about their plan and ways you can support one another.
  • Assemble your contact list of phone numbers for family, friends, neighbors, healthcare providers, teachers, employers, your local public health department and other local agencies you might need to reach in the event of emergency.
  • Designate a room in your house that can be used for isolation, in the event someone becomes sick. Learn More.

If you or any of your family members have questions about health insurance or need coverage, Med-QUEST has resources on options to meet your needs. Learn more.

The outbreak of COVID-19 can cause stress. These tips from the CDC may help manage fear and anxiety you or your loved ones might be feeling.

How you can support yourself, from the CDC:

  • Avoid excessive exposure to media coverage of COVID-19.
  • Take care of your body. Breath deeply, stretch or meditate. Eat healthy, well-balanced meals, exercise regularly, get plenty of sleep and avoid alcohol and drugs.
  • Make time to unwind and remind yourself that strong feelings fade. Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories. It can be upsetting to hear about the crisis and see images repeatedly. Do activities you enjoy to return to your normal life.
  • Connect with others. Share your concerns and how you are feeling with a friend or family member. Maintain healthy relationships.
  • Maintain a sense of hope and positive thinking.
  • Share the facts about COVID-19 and the actual risk to others.



Vulnerable Populations

If you are at higher risk due to age or a serious long-term health problem:

  • Reduce your risk of infection by practicing everyday prevention as part of your daily routine.
  • Know the medications your loved ones take and secure an extra 30-days worth of prescription medications, if possible.
  • Avoid nonessential travel, including plane trips and cruise ships.
  • Call your doctor with presenting symptoms, such as fever, cough and shortness of breath.
  • Seek immediate medical attention if experiencing difficulty breathing, persistent chest pressure or pain, uncharacteristic confusion or bluish lips or face.
  • At-home recovery is possible if your sickness doesn’t require hospitalization. Follow CDC instructions for home care.

If you live in a retirement or independent living community:

  • Stay in your home and maintain social distancing.
  • Establish a buddy system and call fellow residents to check-in on each other.
  • Plan for disruption of typical services, such as hospitals, stores, banks, etc.
  • Actively monitor for COVID-19 symptoms in your community and notify your care team if you or someone in you know exhibits symptoms. Learn more.

If you care for kupuna or someone with a serious long-term health problem:

  • Know the medications taken by your loved ones and secure extra, if possible. Learn more.
  • Inventory medical supplies, such as oxygen, dialysis and wound care, and create a backup plan in the event of supply-chain shortage.
  • Keep nonperishable food items on hand to minimize trips to stores.

If your loved one lives in a long-term care facility:

  • Understand the facility’s outbreak protocol.
  • Call facility ahead of visits for updates and advice.
  • Inquire with the facility about any changes in health status of residents and guidance for visitations.
  • Avoid visiting to the extent possible. Limit time and keep a distance of 6+ ft from others.

No evidence suggests children are more susceptible to COVID-19. Children and young adults are more likely to spread COVID-19 to older individuals and those with chronic diseases than to suffer themselves from complications of COVID-19, it’s important we educate our keiki to keep others in our community safe.

Talk to your children about COVID-19:

  1. Explain what COVID-19 is — a respiratory illness spread from person-to-person contact — and one that poses risks for individuals over the age of 65 and those with pre-existing illnesses. Consider sharing this 3-minute audio clip and comic from NPR.
  2. Reinforce the importance of keeping others safe through everyday prevention, such as proper hand-washing and not sharing food utensils and beverages with others.
  3. Reduce stress and anxiety by sharing what your household is doing to prepare — bringing in additional supplies, following the city and state mandates when it comes to quarentine and social distancing. Let them know your family has plans in place and encourage them to come to you with any questions or concerns. Learn more.

The National Child Traumatic Stress Network has a family fact sheet you can view and download from their site which includes reactions based on age group and the best ways to respond.

Keep your keiki healthy while at home:

  • Children with COVID-19 may present with milder symptoms than adults, e.g. cold-like symptoms such as fever, runny nose and cough. If you observe these symptoms in your child, please contact your health care provider.
  • Launder washable plush toys more regularly and in the warmest water possible.
  • Continue your child's learning at home and help them stay active and socially connected with their peers. Learn more.

I’m currently pregnant. What should I be aware of?

  • The CDC does not yet have information from published scientific reports about susceptibility of pregnant women to COVID-19. Pregnant women do experience immunologic and physiologic changes, though, which might make them more susceptible to viral respiratory infections, including COVID-19. Pregnant women should be monitored since they are known to be at risk with severe viral illness; however, to date data on COVID-19 has not shown increased risk.
  • Because high fevers during the first trimester of pregnancy can increase the risk of certain birth defects, prevention of infection is especially important for expecting mothers. Practice everyday prevention and avoid people who are sick.
  • According to the CDC, COVID-19 is thought to spread mainly through respiratory droplets. Whether a pregnant woman can transmit COVID-19 to her infant before, during or upon delivery is still unknown; however, in limited recent studies of infants born to mothers with COVID-19, none of the infants tested positive for COVID-19. Additionally, the virus was not detected in samples of amniotic fluid or breastmilk.

I’m currently breastfeeding. What should I be aware of?

Visitors and Travelers

On May 18, 2020, Gov. Ige extended Hawaiʻi's mandatory 14-day quarantine for all incoming travelers, which began on March 26 and includes travel to neighbor islands. All incoming travelers, including anyone traveling between the islands, will be required to self-quarantine in their home or another lodging for 14 days. For more, read Gov. Ige outlines re-opening, recovery plan - extends 14-day quarantine for travelers to Hawaii, inter-island travelers. Read the self-quarantine instructions here.

The State Department warns Americans not to travel abroad during the COVID-19 crisis. Recommendations for visitors and residents are frequently being updated. Please check with the Hawaiʻi State Department of Transportation for the latest news regarding travel.

Screening and cleaning

  • Screening for all passengers arriving to Hawaiʻi airports and harbors is expected to begin soon. The Hawaiʻi State Department of Transportation will post updates on their COVID-19 webpage.
  • Hawaiʻi airports and harbors are thoroughly and regularly cleaned and sanitized, with special attention on restrooms, common areas and touch points, such as handrails, doorknobs and elevator buttons. Additional hand sanitizer dispensers are being installed in lobbies and high passenger volume areas.

Airports

  • The Daniel K. Inouye International Airport (HNL) is one of 20 ports of entry into the U.S. with a CDC Quarantine Station. On-site quarantine medical and public health officers at our airport limit the introduction of disease and prevent the spread of infection by deciding whether sick persons can enter the U.S. and what measures should be taken to protect the health of our country.

Harbors

  • The CDC recommends that travelers defer all cruise travel worldwideLearn more.
  • The Cruise Line International Association has announced its cruise lines will be voluntarily and temporarily suspending cruise ship operations from U.S. ports of call for 30 days. The temporary suspension took effect on March 14, 2020.

Visit the Department of Transportation for more information about Hawaiʻi's airports and harbors.

If you are a resident returning home, please be aware that the mandatory 14-day quarantine for incoming travelers will apply, effective March 26, 2020. Learn more.

For information on how to self-quarantine at home, please review information on Symptoms.

The State Department warns Americans not to travel abroad during the COVID-19 crisis. Learn more.

  • Everyone should avoid nonessential travel to countries with a “Level 3: Warning” travel notice.
  • Kupuna and those with serious chronic medical conditions should speak with a healthcare provider and consider postponing travel to countries with “Level 2: Alert” travel notice.
  • The CDC does not yet recommend canceling or postponing travel to countries with “Level 1: Watch” travel notices. For those destinations, the risk of infection for COVID-19 is considered low. Learn more.

COVID-19 isn’t connected to any race, ethnicity, or nationality. By equipping ourselves, our family and friends, our neighbors and our visitors with accurate information, we keep our community healthy and we keep Hawaiʻi a welcoming place to live and visit.

Care in Community Spaces

The Hawaiʻi State Department of Health is working in close coordination with multiple federal, state, county and private agencies as well as with our regional public health partners, hospitals and healthcare community to maintain safe environments in our workplaces, schools and commercial establishments that welcome the public.

In accordance with the state Emergency Proclamation issued by Governor Ige that went into effect Wednesday March 25, employers must adhere to the state mandate as it applies to their businesses and employees. A complete list of Essential Businesses, accoring to the proclimation,a can be found by visiting the link above. If your business is included on the list, the CDC has created the following guidelines to provide continuity for employers who remain open for business and operational:

  • Cross-train key staff at work so one person’s absence won’t derail your organization’s ability to function.
  • Separate sick employees and those showing symptoms should be sent home.
  • Consider alternatives to large meetings or conferences to limit the number of people in a room to fewer than 10 and to ensure 6+ feet distance between everyone.
  • Increase cleaning of frequently-touched items, surfaces and areas.
  • Suspend nonessential employee travel to minimize exposure.
  • Consider use of telecommuting options when practical and minimize the number of employees working within close proximity of one another. In particular, large in-person meetings and conferences should be minimized or canceled when possible.
  • Encourage employees to stay home when they are sick and maximize flexibility in sick leave benefits.
  • Do not require a doctor’s note for employees who are sick.
  • Place hand sanitizers in reception areas.
  • Coordination with state and local health officials is strongly encouraged for all businesses so that timely and accurate information can guide appropriate responses in each location where their operations reside.
    • Use existing resources to help educate employees.

Visit DBEDT for more information on the economic impact data helping workplaces make informed decisions.

For food service professionals:

Learn more interim guidance for businesses and employers from the CDC.

Hawai‘i’s events, groups and gatherings are part of the fabric that make our culture special, from hula hālau to public talks, concerts and food festivals. As the COVID-19 outbreak evolved, Hawai'i's communities were asked to adapt as well. This has meant many cancellations and postponements. Under the current proclamation from Governor Ige, no groups of 10 or larger are permitted. A full list of closures can be found in the link above.

Public Places

  • Hand-washing facilities in public restrooms should include soap and placards with hand-washing instructions as well as instructions for the proper disposal of tissues and other potentially contaminated materials.
  • High-touch surface areas such as countertops, door handles and handrails should be cleaned and disinfected frequently. Learn more.

Healthcare providers care for patients that may be infected with COVID-19. Healthcare providers should view the lastest medical advisory. Providers may minimize their exposure risk by following the CDC’s interim infection prevention and control recommendations. We want to mahalo the healthcare providers who are working to provide the best care, while preventing the spread of the virus. Learn More.

What healthcare professionals should know:

  • COVID-19 is spread mostly from person-to-person via respiratory droplets among close contact. Learn more.
  • Close contact can occur with a patient in the following instances:
    • Being within approximately 6 ft of a patient for more than 10 minutes.
    • Having direct contact with infectious secretions, including sputum, blood and respiratory droplets.
  • Healthcare personnel may be at risk of infection if close contact with a patient occurs without the proper personal protective equipment.
  • Healthcare personnel caring for patients with confirmed or possible COVID-19 should adhere to CDC recommendations for infection prevention and control.
  • Professionals should perform hand hygiene with alcohol-based hand rub before and after all patient contact, contact with potentially infectious material and before putting on and upon removal of personal protective equipment, including gloves.
  • Soap and water is recommended if hands are visibly soiled.
  • Conduct routine cleaning and disinfection procedures in healthcare settings.

More information for healthcare professionals is available on the CDC’s frequently asked questions and answers page. Learn more.

First Responders

During the course of their work, all first responders, including law enforcement, fire services, emergency medical services and emergency management officials may come into close contact with individuals who may have COVID-19. Unlike professionals working in a healthcare facility, first responders must maneuver risks associated with the nature of the setting, enclosed space during transport, frequent need for rapid decision-making, interventions with limited information and a varying range of other issues.

Close communication and coordination are crucial when responding to individuals who may have COVID-19. When a patient needing emergency transport is suspected to have COVID-19, prehospital care providers and health facilities should be notified in advance that they may be caring for, transporting or receiving a patient who may be infected. All personnel should avoid touching their face while working.

Recommendations for EMS clinicians and medical first responders

Patient assessment

  • If responding to a potential COVID-19 patient, EMS clinicians should wear the appropriate personal protective equipment before entering the scene.
  • Consider the signs, symptoms and risk factors of COVID-19.
  • EMS clinicians should use the appropriate precautions when responding to any patient with signs or symptoms of a respiratory infection.
  • If possible, the initial assessment should begin from a distance of at least 6 feet from the patient.
  • Patient contact should be minimized until the patient is wearing a face mask.
  • In order to minimize possible exposures, limit the number of providers in the patient compartment during transport.

Recommended personal protective equipment

  • N-95 or higher-level respirator. If unavailable, a face mask is an approved alternative.
  • N-95 respirators or respirators that offer a higher level of protection should be used instead of a face mask when performing or present for an aerosol-generating procedure.
  • Proper eye protection, including goggles or disposable face shields that fully covers the front and sides of the face, should be worn.
  • Personal eyeglasses and contact lenses are NOT considered proper eye protection.
  • First responders should wear disposable patient examination gloves and an isolation gown.
  • It is recommended to change gloves if they become torn or heavily contaminated.
  • If there are shortages of gowns they should be prioritized for the following activities:
    • Aerosol-generating procedures.
    • Care activities where splashes or sprays are anticipated.
    • High-contact patient care activities that might allow the transfer of pathogens to the hands and clothing of EMS clinicians.

More information can be found in the EMS Infectious Disease Playbook. Learn more.

Long-Term Care Facilities

According to the CDC, long-term care facilities are at high risk for severe COVID-19 outbreaks due to their congregate nature and vulnerable population. Healthcare personnel and visitors are the most likely sources of introduction of COVID-19 into the facility. For these reasons, all long-term care facilities need a COVID-19 plan in accordance with CDC guidelines and should practice approved screening of all staff and visitors for illness. Individuals with symptoms should be temporarily turned away from these specific facilities.

The general public should avoid going to medical settings such as hospitals, nursing homes and long-term care facilities unless they need medical care. If you have symptoms, call a healthcare provider ahead of time. You may be able to be served by phone. Do not visit the emergency room unless it is essential.

Visitor Restrictions:

  • Discourage visitation at your facility and offer alternative methods of visitation (video or phone calls, etc.), if available.
  • Limit each resident to no more than 1 adult visitor per day. No visitors should be allowed in units with an outbreak.
  • Actively screen all visitors for a fever and respiratory symptoms. Do not allow sick visitors
    to visit.
  • Maintain a record (e.g., a log with contact information, date, travel, illness screening and temperature) of all visitors (including vendors, inspectors, etc.). Retain the visitor log for at least 30 days.
  • Ensure visitors limit their movement within the facility (e.g., avoid the cafeteria and other public gathering areas).
  • Post visual alerts at the entrance to long-term care facilities instructing visitors not to visit if they have a fever, or symptoms of a respiratory illness.

Supporting Residents:

  • Modify and limit face-to-face interactions.
  • Establish a buddy system and have residents check-in with each other via phone calls.
  • Help residents manage anxiety related to COVID-19.
  • Ensure continuity of regular care and essential services.
  • Notify local health authorities if there is a COVID-19 case in your retirement community or facility.
  • Keep residents and visitors informed by using handouts and high-visibility posters in high-traffic locations. Learn more.

Correctional Facilities

People housed in correctional facilities are at high risk for COVID-19 transmission due to their congregate nature, and the health vulnerability of incarcerated populations increase the likelihood of disease spread.

Correctional facilities should adhere to existing facilities outbreak management principles and existing statewide regulations and should follow the applicable recommendations outlined by the CDC.

Facilities fall under two planning categories: those with on-site medical resources, and those without. Both facility types should review and update their infectious disease response plans and adhere to these prevention strategies for all incarcerated individuals and staff.

Manage flow of outside visitors and personnel

  • Suspend facility tours and visitation while on COVID-19 infection control protocols to prevent further potential exposures. Notification to the public should be made.
  • Suspend volunteer-managed programs while COVID-19 infection control protocols are in effect.

Limit possible transmission avenues

  • Enforce employee hygiene (wash your hands, cover your cough and stay home when you are sick).
  • Adhere to infection control practices and use personal protective equipment as appropriate.
  • Notify supervisors immediately if workers are exposed to the virus and implement home self-monitoring.
  • Utilize personal protective equipment for both staff and incarcerated individuals.

Protect prison populations

  • Limit movement of incarcerated individuals to reduce the possibility of additional exposures.
  • Evaluate any new residents for COVID-19 symptoms during intake.
  • Educate incarcerated individuals and staff on infection control measures.
  • Move incarcerated individuals pending transfer to a designated isolation unit for 72 hours prior to transfer. Transfer will be canceled should the individual become symptomatic.
  • Limit gatherings of both staff and incarcerated individuals to prevent possible exposure.

All correctional facilities should stay in close communication with Hawai‘i Department of Public Safety and use the available checklists and guidelines provided by the CDC. Learn more.

Dental Service Providers

To conserve personal protective equipment and limit the exposure of patients and staff to COVID-19, the CDC recommends that dental service providers postpone elective procedures, surgeries and non-urgent dental visits.

Patients should be contacted prior to urgent or emergency procedures to be screened for symptoms of respiratory illness. For further guidelines, please refer to “Interim Infection Prevention and Control Guidance for Dental Settings During the COVID-19 Response".

Behavioral Health & Homelessness Statewide Unified Response Group (BHHSURG)

Behavioral health and homelessness services remain essential during this pandemic and will be vital far beyond its resolution because of the pandemic’s economic, social and psychological impacts.

For unified and up to date guidance and support (resources, webinars, and newsletters) to providers across the behavioral health and homelessness services systems of Hawaii, visit the Behavioral Health & Homelessness Statewide Unified Response Group.

All transportation providers should increase the cleaning of vehicles and high-touch surface areas. Sanitary wipes should be provided in buses and other public transportation vehicles. Airports should have an increased number of hand sanitizers in common areas and signage to promote hand-washing instructions in restrooms.

The most effective way to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is to practice good personal hygiene. Public and private transportation companies should take the following precautions:

  • Work with local authorities to ensure you are following the best practices recommendations by health experts.
  • Disinfect all high-touch surfaces multiple times each day.
  • Encourage riders to protect themselves and others from the spread of COVID-19. People who experience potential symptoms should not ride public transit. Transportation options should be discussed with your medical professional.
  • Employees should stay home when they are sick and maximize flexibility in sick leave benefits.
  • Embrace extensive cleaning protocols, dispense hand sanitizer and equip bus, shuttle and car operators with disinfectant wipes.
  • Communicate often. Proactively address questions from employees and clients and correct misperceptions about the safety of using public transportation, taxis and ride-share.

Learn more about how DOT is helping transportation providers prepare.

The ninth supplementary emergency proclamation requires all incoming visitors and returning Hawaii residents to self-quarantine for 14 days in their accommodations (i.e., residence, hotel room or vacation rental). People in quarantine are not allowed to leave their accommodations unless to seek medical attention. Hotels and hosts have been asked by Hawaiʻi Emergency Management to assist with visitor noncompliance.

As of June 16, 2020, interisland travelers are not required to self-quarantine. Passengers on inter-island flights must complete a new Travel and Health Form before boarding. Visit health.hawaii.gov/travel for more information.

The State Department warns Americans not to travel abroad during the COVID-19 crisis. Learn more.

For Hotels and Operators of Visitor Accommodations

All properties should have a COVID-19 plan in accordance with the Hawaiʻi State Department of Health guidelines.

  • Identify potential isolation areas apart from central facilities and guest rooms.
  • Visitors and staff should be advised to stay away from large gatherings when sick.
  • All facilities should provide hand sanitizers in lobbies and common areas as well as soap and hand-washing facilities in restrooms.
  • All facilities should promote proper hand-washing and respiratory etiquette.
  • Share information to prevent the spread of COVID-19 among residents and visitors alike.
  • Maintain the highest standards for sanitation and enhance efforts for hotels, attractions, restaurants and other public spaces throughout our islands.

Learn about the guidance the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority is providing to the visitor industry.

For Commercial Tour Operators

  • The Hawaiʻi State Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation (DOBOR) has suspended all commercial operator permits until further notice. This covers hundreds of tour operators, surf and SUP schools, sight-seeing, whale-watching and dinner cruises and any commercial operation operating in state ocean waters.
  • The DLNR Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW) has closed all commercial tours on State trails and wildlife sanctuaries. Any vendors with tours already booked will be refunded.

Learn about the decision from the Department of Land and Natural Resources.

Counties throughout the State of Hawaiʻi have made individual decisions about the closure of parks, beach parks and park facilities. Please refer to your county’s Department of Parks and Recreation for closures that may affect your operations.

For Restaurants, Cafes, Bars and Nightclubs

Counties throughout the State of Hawaiʻi have made individual decisions about the guidelines for food and beverage establishments. Many facilities have been ordered to close indoor dining, offer takeout or delivery only to clients and amend hours of service. Please refer to your County Mayor’s office for proclamations and rules that may affect your operations.

Learn more about COVID-19 and Food Safety.

Guidelines for Employers

The Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention encourage businesses to follow recommendations regarding the workplace and employees. This includes guidance on maintaining flexible sick leave policies, encouraging sick workers to stay home and implementing regular environmental cleaning protocols and specific health checks for work-related travel.

Learn about the economic impact data DBEDT is tracking to help the visitor industry make informed decisions.

Other Resources

In accordance with Governor Ige’s current proclamation, the Hawai'i State Department of Education has closed all Hawai'i public schools until April 30th, or until there have been no new cases for four weeks on the island where a school is located, with the exception of grab-and-go meals for students at designated schools. Visit the Department of Education’s website for more information on grab-and-go meal sites, daily updates and access to distance learning resources.

Read the Hawaiʻi State Department of Health's Interim Guidance document for Childcare Facilities here.

Once schools reopen all should have soap and water or hand sanitizers in bathrooms and gathering places. No person should go to school when sick and if you have a child with chronic health conditions, consult your doctor about school attendance.

Tips for Working Parents during school closures and mandated quarentine

  • Talk to your boss.
    • discuss specifics around paid leave or work-from-home expectations.
  • Designate rooms or zones in the house for work and for childcare.
  • Alternate childcare shifts when possible.
  • Enlist the support of family and friends for childcare and errands while adhereing to responsible social distancing.
  • Spend screen time wisely.
    • Be mindful of the number of devices requiring internet while you work from home.
    • Older children may be expected to use technology to complete school work from home.
    • Younger children may benefit from screen restrictions, allowing you to focus on work while they stay physically or mentally active. Learn more.

Colleges and Universities

  • On March 18th University of Hawai'i announced that all campuses would transition to online learning services for the remainder of the Spring semester with limited excpetions. While some on-campus support programs are operational, the campuses are closed to the public. For detailed information provided by leadership at the University of Hawai'i please visit www.hawaii.edu

The COVID-19 situation is dynamic. Given the speed of spread and the number of countries experiencing community transmission, colleges and universities will evaluate the risks associated with choosing to maintain programs abroad and take the appropriate proactive measures. Schools that continue to maintain programs abroad should monitor the CDC for additional information. Learn more.

More information for institutes of higher education is available on the CDC’s frequently asked questions and answers page. Learn more.

COVID-19 updates for Hawaiʻi universities and colleges can be accessed on websites for:

Transmission of COVID-19 in the community could affect people experiencing homelessness in several ways. The outbreak could cause illness among people experiencing homelessness, could contribute to an increase in emergency shelter usage or may lead to illness and absenteeism among homeless-service provider staff.

People who are experiencing homelessness are often at higher risk for infectious diseases and severe outcomes. Protecting your staff and clients requires a coordinated effort between homeless service providers, healthcare facilities and the health department.

Read the Hawaiʻi State Department of Health's Interim Guidance document for Homeless Shelters and Encampments here as well as the below information to prepare before cases are identified in your community and make a plan for how to respond if COVID-19 cases are identified.

For unified and up-to-date guidance and support (resources, webinars, and newsletters) to providers across the behavioral health and homelessness services systems of Hawaii, visit the Behavioral Health and Homelessness Statewide Unified Response Group.

The temporary quarantine and isolation center has information regarding referral and admission.

  • Stay up-to-date.
  • Protect staff, clients and guests.
    • Develop or update your emergency operations plan.
    • Communicate about COVID-19 and everyday prevention to prevent disease spread.
      • People experiencing homelessness may be at increased risk of adverse mental health outcomes, particularly during outbreaks of infectious diseases. Learn more about mental health and coping during COVID-19.
    • Minimize the number of staff members who have face-to-face interactions with clients with respiratory symptoms. Use physical barriers to protect staff who will have interactions with clients with unknown infection status.
    • Staff and volunteers at high risk of severe COVID-19 (those who are older or have underlying health conditions) should not be designated as caregivers for sick clients who are staying in the shelter.
    • If staff are handling client belongings, they should use disposable gloves.
    • Make sure to train any staff using gloves to ensure proper use.
    • Encourage staff and volunteers to remain home if they are sick with cough, sneezing and/or fever.
    • Limit visitors to the facility.
  • Ensure clients receive assistance in preventing disease spread and accessing care, as needed.
    • Facilities providing sleeping accommodations should attempt to increase the distance between people, where feasible. In general sleeping areas, ensure that beds/mats are at least 6 ft apart and request that all clients sleep head-to-toe.
    • Provide access to fluids, tissues and plastic bags for the proper disposal of used tissues.
    • Encourage guests to report illnesses and exposure to COVID-19 to staff prior or upon entry to the facility. Reassure clients that they will not be denied or lose a bed if they report symptoms.
    • Monitor clients who could be at high risk for complications from COVID-19 (those who are older or have underlying health conditions) and reach out to them regularly.
    • Confine clients with mild respiratory symptoms consistent with COVID-19 infection to individual rooms, if possible, and have them avoid common areas.

If you identify any client with severe symptoms, arrange for the client to receive immediate medical care.

Learn more about how the State of Hawai‘i Homeless Initiative is providing support to Homeless Service Providers.

Other resources:

Call 211

Aloha United Way 211 specialists are waiting to answer your COVID-19 questions.