HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Many viewers have reached out to Hawaii News Now inquiring about the number of COVID-19 patients in the state who have recovered from the virus.
Up until Saturday, that information wasn’t available as health officials previously said they weren’t tracking the number of recovered patients.
But on Saturday, the Department of Health added a new line to this website, which details the number of patients who are getting better, and have been released from isolation.
As of March 28, the DOH said 39 people were healthy enough to be released.
The data was compiled to be made available to the public. It’s a complete turnaround from health officials who previously said they weren’t tracking recoveries in the islands.
On Thursday at a press conference alongside Gov. Ige, DOH Director Bruce Anderson couldn’t provide a solid number of recovered patients.
“Well virtually everyone’s recovered, so far,” Anderson said. "We haven’t had any deaths here in Hawaii. I mentioned the one death we thought was attributed to COVID-19 was not as it turns out to be, exposed or infected with COVID-19. So we have a 100 percent recovery rate as far as we know at this point in time."
Anderson said that as a 37-year-old Ewa Beach man laid on a hospital bed, hooked up to a ventilator fighting for his life after contracting the virus.
The number of people released from isolation will now be included in the state’s daily totals.
But Anderson indicated we’re not out of the woods just yet when it comes to the severity of this pandemic.
“That’s not to say we aren’t going to see some deaths. Often you have a situation where someone is very fragile, and whether they have the flu or COVID-19, it just takes a little to tip them over the edge. I would expect we are going to see some in the not too distant future simply because the group at risk is generally elderly and very often have other underlying health conditions,” he added.