Governor announces that pre-travel testing will begin Oct. 15
HONOLULU — Gov. David Ige yesterday announced a new leadership team that will oversee the state’s public health response to COVID-19 and the pre-travel testing program for COVID-19, which will start Oct. 15.
Pre-travel testing enables travelers to avoid a mandatory 14-day quarantine if they are tested no earlier than 72 hours before their flight arrives with an FDA-approved nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT), performed using a nasal swab, and can show proof of negative test results from a CLIA certified laboratory. Travelers also will have their temperatures checked upon arrival and must fill out a travel and health form. Upon arrival in Hawaii, passengers unable to provide proof of an approved negative test will be required to go into quarantine for 14 days or until they can provide proof of negative test results.
Maj. Gen. Ken Hara, director of the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency, continues his role as incident commander, spearheading the collaboration between federal, state and county resources to address the pandemic response.
Dr. Libby Char, director of the State Department of Health, is responsible for the management of the state’s public health programs and collaboration between state, county, and private healthcare partners.
Lt. Gov. Josh Green will spearhead the pre-travel testing program, which includes adding partners to administer the tests and sourcing new testing options and is also responsible for planning the state’s COVID-19 vaccination strategy.
“This new leadership team gives us a stronger operational structure, stronger leadership, and clears the way for stronger partnerships between the public and private sectors,” said Ige.
Dr. Virginia Pressler, former director of the state Department of Health, has volunteered to lead the Laulima Alliance, a cross functional team of public and private sector resources, ensuring that all have a voice in policy making and implementation of programs responding to the pandemic.
“Together with the progress we’ve made, and continue to make, in the fight against COVID-19, this new leadership team gives us confidence that the time is right to launch our pre-travel COVID-19 testing program, which is an important step toward reviving our economy while continuing to protect public health,” said Gov. Ige.