Two coronavirus-related deaths reported at Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home

  • Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home in Hilo. (AVALON HEALTH CARE/Special to West Hawaii Today)

Hawaii Island marked its first coronavirus-related deaths Sunday as the number of positive COVID-19 cases on the island climbed to 340.

Hilo Medical Center reported the deaths of two people at Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home on Sunday. Both reportedly had underlying health issues.

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“We offer our sincerest condolences to the family and loved ones of these veterans who served our country,” the center said Sunday. “The leadership and dedicated staff at the Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home are taking all the appropriate steps to manage and contain this outbreak.”

In all, 27 residents and 10 employees have tested positive for COVID-19. Six are hospitalized at Hilo Medical Center and 19 are being cared for in the veterans home’s COVID designated area.

Hilo Medical Center said it currently has 18 COVID-19 patients hospitalized with three in the intensive care unit and 15 in its “COVID unit.”

The center also said that all employees and patients tested after a staffer in the Behavioral Health Unit had tested positive for COVID-19 have all come back negative.

“We are assessing the possibility of restarting admissions to the unit,” the center said in its Sunday update.

Kona Community Hospital meanwhile reported it had admitted two inpatients overnight who were discharged on Sunday.

Meanwhile, state health officials on Sunday reported 200 new cases of COVID-19, bringing Hawaii’s total case count to 8,339.

Of Sunday’s new cases, 174 were on Oahu, 22 were on Hawaii Island and four were on Maui, according to the Hawaii COVID-19 Joint Information Center.

Of the 8,339 known cases since Feb. 28, some 6,190 of those cases are still considered active. That includes 166 of the known cases on the Big Island.

To date, Oahu has recorded the majority of the state’s positive cases at 7,584 cases. Maui County has recorded 334 cases, Hawaii County 340 and Kauai County 56. Twenty-four residents have tested positive while out of the state.

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Statewide, 505 or 6% of COVID-19 patients have required hospitalization, including 13 on Hawaii Island, according to the center’s noon update. The center reported no COVID-19 deaths on Hawaii Island despite Civil Defense notifying the public Sunday morning of one of the two deaths.

Of the 65 deaths reported among Hawaii residents, 54 were on Oahu, eight were on Maui, two were on Hawaii Island, and one was a Kauai resident receiving treatment in Arizona at the time he died.

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