Council schedules emergency meeting: Videoconference meeting to address COVID-19; emailed public testimony encouraged

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The Hawaii County Council has scheduled an emergency session Friday with the Department of Health to have the state brief them and the community on coronavirus testing.

The meeting will cover the general availability of test kits in the state and county, federal and state supports and constraints, the rationale for requiring a physician’s order to be eligible for testing rather than implementing a program of broader testing, costs associated with such testing and current capabilities of the state’s health-care infrastructure and logistics, including private sector support.

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It’s scheduled for 1 p.m. Friday, with council members videoconferencing from various locations. It will be live-streamed on the County Council website https://www.hawaiicounty.gov/our-county/legislative by clicking “council meetings” in the left-hand panel. Public testimony by email is highly encouraged, said Council Chairman Aaron Chung. The meeting will be closed to the public and oral testimony will not be taken.

Chung said he hopes the public will watch the live-stream and he is really interested in seeing emailed testimony from the public.

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“Testing is vital in all of this,” Chung said. “This will be instructive in what we’re going to do.”

An agenda for the meeting will be posted today, said County Clerk Jon Henricks.

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