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COVID-19 Briefs

UH extends deadline for applications

The Maui News

The University of Hawaii is extending the deadline to apply for admission to its Manoa, Hilo and West Oahu campuses to Aug. 1, the same deadline as the seven UH community colleges, including UH-Maui College.

The new deadline will give prospective students more time to consider attending a UH campus in 2020-21 academic year because of the uncertainties associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a news release. 

Students are encouraged to apply as early as possible, particularly if they are interested in financial aid.

Application information is available at apply.hawaii.edu/.

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DHHL mortgage payments postponed

The Hawaiian Homes Commission has approved an emergency postponement of mortgage payments for six months for Department of Hawaiian Home Lands direct loans and loans assigned to the department.

The deferral, approved during a special emergency meeting Tuesday, starts with the April payment.

Lessees or borrowers, who may need additional time, can request relief from the department and will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, ultimately going before the Hawaiian Homes Commission board for approval.

“We can already see there will be a long-term economic impact from the COVID-19 crisis, and the department felt it was important to act swiftly in the interest of beneficiaries during this uncertain time,” said commission Chairman William Aila Jr.

He said the action affects over 1,200 direct loans administered through DHHL.

Information about DHHL loan deferrals is available by calling (808) 620-9500.

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Harbor, ramp restrooms reopen

Restrooms at state small boat harbors and boat ramps were reopened Wednesday.

The reopening observes Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance for ensuring availability of toilets and hand-washing facilities for homeless people during the COVID-19 emergency, according to a state Department of Land and Natural Resources news release.

The Division of Boating and Ocean Recreation restrooms will be open continuously seven days a week until further notice.

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Some clearances for TB suspended

The state Department of Health is waiving routine tuberculosis clearance requirements for selected groups through May 31 to support COVID-19 mitigation efforts.

Annual clearances are suspended for health care workers and patients in long-term care facilities. TB clearances also are suspended for food handlers, children entering child care, preschool or kindergarten through the 12th grade, and post-secondary school students and employees.

TB clearances continue to be required for new health care workers, new child care and school employees and new residents of long-term care facilities.

The Health Department will continue to provide full evaluation and treatment of patients with active TB, as well as those who have been exposed to individuals with active TB.

The suspension will support social distancing in the community to protect the public, especially vulnerable seniors and those with medical conditions that could increase their risk for COVID-19, according to a department news release.

It said the department determined that temporarily suspending the TB clearance for the selected categories does not pose immediate risks for tuberculosis transmission in the community and reduces the greater risks of contracting COVID-19.

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Sacred Hearts has web classes

Classes resumed Wednesday via the internet for students of Sacred Hearts School in Lahaina after an extended spring break.

The kindergarten to 8th-grade school is providing interactive instruction to students by the internet. Students log on from their homes and the teacher conducts the class and delivers instruction, provides illustrations and videos and facilitates discussions. The remote classes are being held as if students were back in the classroom for the full school day, including breaks for recess and lunch, according to a news release from the school.

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