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Third Hale Makua senior has COVID-19; home patient isolated, asymptomatic

Hawaii state Department of Health microbiologist Mark Nagata demonstrates the process for testing a sample for coronavirus at the department's laboratory in Pearl City, Oahu. AP Photo/Audrey McAvoy

Another senior with Hale Makua Health Services has tested positive for coronavirus after time spent at Maui Memorial hospital, Hale Makua officials said Thursday afternoon.

The positive test comes a day after information was reported on two other seniors with Hale Makua who have tested positive for coronavirus. All three had been recently discharged from Maui Memorial hospital, where a cluster of infected workers and patients began mid-March.

Thursday’s Hale Makua case involves a home care patient with limited exposure to staff, according to Wesley Lo, Hale Makua chief executive officer. The patient remains in isolation and is asymptomatic, Lo told The Maui News.

Hale Makua’s other two cases involve one home health care patient, who was recently released by state officials from quarantine, and one Kahului nursing home resident, who is currently in isolation and is asymptomatic.

The nursing home resident, who was in contact with a cluster of workers with coronavirus at Maui Memorial, according to state health officials, has triggered the recent testing of more than 80 Hale Makua staff and 30 residents, nursing home officials said.

The nursing home resident was one of six identified over the weekend by the state Department of Health as having contact with the hospital cluster. All six have been retested for coronavirus and results are pending on four, negative on one and positive on one, Lo said.

There were 37 coronavirus cases associated with Maui Memorial as of Wednesday, according to the state Department of Health; however, state officials have said the exact number of cases confirmed to be related to the cluster is under investigation. Maui Health CEO Mike Rembis said in an employee email Monday that 27 employees and nine patients tested positive for COVID-19.

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