Hawaii is making progress in ‘flattening the curve.’ Now what?

Published: Apr. 15, 2020 at 10:41 AM HST
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HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The business closures, school shutdowns, social distancing, and masks are all working to help flatten the curve of COVID-19 cases. But state leaders say we all need to keep doing it.

Lt. Gov. Josh Green marked the state’s total of 517 cases on his white board Tuesday afternoon. He called it a very flat curve.

“Good news, just 13 new cases,” Green said. “You guys are so committed to doing the right things.”

Hawaii’s caseload is not skyrocketing, as some models have predicted. The predicted shortage of hospital beds has not happened.

Right now, about half of Hawaii’s hospital beds are available, along with about 60% of ICU beds, according to Green.

He says it’s not a coincidence.

“Had we not sacrificed so much by staying home, by not going to work, by sacrificing some of our economic opportunity, instead of having 517 cases, we would have had 5,000 more cases. I can say that with certainty," he said.

That’s the dilemma. How many sacrifices are people willing to make to keep the numbers down?

“Right now all we’re doing is guesstimating,” said one Kalihi man who goes by the name Toppixx. He’s worried about getting sick and paying the bills.

“We need to get a grip on this thing because the economy is in a bad shape,” Green said.

As politicians struggle with when and how to lift our lockdowns, scientists say the virus could keep coming back. That’s why Hawaii’s flattening curve is no guarantee of what’s to come.

“I’m gonna stress one more time — we must continue all the way until April 30th and we must adhere to the governors orders," Green said. "It will save lives.”

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