KITV4: After nearly a month of no new cases, Moloka’i reports 13 infections over the past three days

The last time the “Friendly Isle” reported new cases was on July 16, with one new case. Before that, the island did not see any new infections for six weeks.

Monday’s four new COVID-19 cases on Moloka’i is the latest in a three-day uptick that ended the island’s nearly month-long streak of no new infections.

The last time the “Friendly Isle” reported new cases was on July 16, with one new case. Before that, the island did not see any new infections for six weeks.

But on Saturday, the island reported two new infections, followed by seven on Sunday, and four more on Monday.

State Sen. Lynn DeCoite, who represents the island, blamed the new cases on large gatherings at funerals and parties.

“I am worried, you know people have gotten really relaxed here and they need to be careful, a lot of traveling going on,” DeCoite said.

“I just keep reminding everybody, we gotta be safe out there, you know, be careful, we don’t want these numbers to climb.”

Some residents said they follow the safety guidelines and worry about visitors contributing to the spread of the virus.

“You can tell who’s local and who’s not, so we try to keep precautions,” said Diamond Crivello, manager of THE Store House in Kaunakakai.

“We try to keep not as many people in our store at once.”

On top of asking residents to practice proper safety protocol, DeCoite is urging her constituents to get the COVID-19 shot.

At least 60 percent of Moloka’i residents have been vaccinated — and Crivello may be added to that count, as he plans to get vaccinated on Tuesday to avoid contracting and spreading the virus.

“It’s (the new cases) crazy, it’s crazy. For me, I think being vaccinated is the safest way,” Crivello added.

DeCoite said she knows some Moloka’i residents who opted out of the vaccine, but have since been infected with COVID-19, and now regret their decision.

“They have gone through a great ordeal, it really hit them hard,” DeCoite added.

“As they go forward they have emailed and texted and called and said ‘hey, this is really bad, I never want anybody to go through this.'”

DeCoite also said she is in talks with the state to make more testing and vaccinations available on the “Friendly Isle.”

Moloka’i General Hospital is set to host drive-through testing on Tuesday afternoon.

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