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Virus hospitalizations rise in Hawaii as omicron spreads

HONOLULU (AP) — Hawaii recorded an increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations Wednesday as the omicron variant continued to spread throughout the islands.

There was a 35 percent increase in hospitalizations from the previous day, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported.

The Hawaii health department reported a total of 439 infected patients in Hawaii hospitals Wednesday. There were 324 on Tuesday. There were 31 people in intensive care and 14 on ventilators.

Hawaii, with a population of about 1.5 million people, reported more than 3,500 new cases Wednesday.

On Monday, the Queen’s Health Systems announced an “internal state of emergency” for its hospital in west Oahu.

According to the Star-Advertiser, Queen’s Chief Operating Officer Jason Chang reported 96 health care providers from Queen’s Medical Center-West Oahu were out because of COVID exposure.

“There are 104 beds at QMC-West,” said Chang in a news release Monday. “As of 3 p.m. we have 112 percent inpatient occupancy. In the Emergency Department we currently have 58 patients and 16 inpatients holding.”

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