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Sometimes It Takes a Village

Updated: Feb 15, 2023

I am often asked about the COVID-19 situation here, on the Big Island. While last year's lockdowns devastated the islands, this year brought a glimpse of hope. Life started to get back to normal, some travel restrictions went away, tourism came back, and businesses reopened. It felt like "Rising from the Ashes", which I wrote about a few months ago in my blog.

However, the new surge of the Delta variant brought this progress to a halt. With the number of cases rising and hospitals overloaded, the restrictions are coming back. By tracking the daily headlines from the local newspaper Hawaii Tribune-Herald, you can get a good idea of what has been going on in the state and on the Big Island in particular. As the number of cases rises, so does the severity of restrictions coming from the state and local governments and the looming health care crisis. Many of us wonder, what would come next? Rationing of health care? More deaths? New lockdowns? I don't think anyone wants to go through that again.

The variants keep coming, which keep us in a vicious cycle, we need to stop it in its tracks.

The solution? Unfortunately, there is no simple answer to that question. For some, vaccinating the majority of the population and reaching herd immunity makes the most sense. However, opinions differ significantly on this subject, and it divides people. And divided, we fall.

In 100 years, not much has changed about how we can protect ourselves and others. This article was written 100 years ago in the quest to save people from the Spanish Flu:

Best car for the Big Island

As a community, we need to come together and make a wise choice. What should that be? You be the judge. Please let me know in the comments what you think.


• New state virus cases break record

• Bring on the crackdown. The unvaccinated must be held accountable


• Healthcare Association of Hawaii supports COVID-19 vaccine mandate for health care workers

• DOH reports 76 new COVID-19 cases on Big Island


• US employers ratchet up the pressure on the unvaccinated

• Delta variant surge has had little impact on tourism


• COVID cases reported at Life Care Center of Hilo


• DOE mandates vaccinations for sports, delays high school seasons until Sept. 24

• COVID testing demand surges

• 131 COVID-19 cases reported on Big Island


• ‘There are only so many beds’: COVID-19 surge hits hospitals

• Surge in COVID cases among unvaccinated people ‘very, very sobering’

• Ige signs order requiring county, state employees to get vaccinated or face regular


• Number of COVID cases in Life Care Center of Hilo climbs to 16

• DOH reports 628 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 110 on Big Island


• US averaging 100,000 new COVID-19 infections a day

• Return of cruise ships still up in the air

• Delta variant fueling COVID-19 surge

• Rallying for choice: Residents demonstrate against youth vaccination requirements


• Weary US businesses confront new round of mask mandates

• DOH: 437 new COVID cases statewide, 67 on Big Island


• Ige: ‘We need to take further action to restrict’ gatherings

• State kicks off ‘Vax Da Max’ incentives

• DOH: 436 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 76 on Big Island


• Hilo Medical Center full amid latest COVID-19 surge

• Ige cuts allowable gathering sizes, caps indoor capacities at 50%


• More COVID cases in E. Hawaii long-term care homes

• Feeding the ‘spiritual hunger’: Hilo churches stay strong despite COVID challenges

• DOH: 549 COVID-19 cases statewide, 122 on Big Island


• Extra COVID vaccine OK’d for those with weak immune systems

• States that had a grip on COVID now seeing a crush of cases

• DOH reports 1,167 new COVID-19 cases


• More US cities requiring proof of vaccination to go places


• Eateries, other businesses adjust to new state COVID mandates

• Virus claims more young victims as deaths climb yet again

• Bracing for the worst: Kona hospital nearing ICU capacity


• Schools try to ‘stay the course’: COVID-19 cases creep up at DOE campuses statewide

• More than 50 cases reported at Big Island schools

• DOH: 460 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 84 on Big Island


• Relief arrives at HMC: 11 nurses, respiratory therapist will help ease ‘exhaustion, frustration’

• DOH: 647 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 87 on Big Island


• Roth asks Ige to reinstate trans-Pacific pretravel testing, even for those who are vaccinated

• DOH: 752 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 163 on Big Island

• Clamping down: County could return to beach closures amid coronavirus spike


• Record delta wave hits kids, raises fear as US schools open

• COVID temporarily shuts down Hilo library

• DOH reports 162 new COVID-19 cases on the Big Island, 845 statewide


• New rules await approval: Mayor seeks OK for more stringent COVID-19 restrictions

• Green: Unvaccinated COVID patients are taking away resources from others


• Ige: Don’t visit Hawaii now

• DOH: 565 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 100 on Big Island


• DOH: 625 new COVID-19 cases, 100 on Big Island


• Mandate for HMC: Vaccinations or testing for Hawaii Health Systems Corp. facility employees

• Record number of COVID patients in HMC

• DOH: 831 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 176 on Big Island


• Native Hawaiian leaders band together to urge vaccinations

• Virus surge breaks hospital records amid rising toll on kids


• County COVID rules approved; parks to remain open with restrictions

• DOH: 1,035 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 184 on Big Island


• ‘Seriously, y’all. Stop it’: Experts urge islanders not to use ivermectin to treat COVID

• Surge ‘frustrating’ for COVID testers


• DOH: 720 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 139 on Big Island


• ‘We cannot divert patients’: Hilo Medical Center operating over capacity

• State mulls Labor Day weekend mandates

• Hawaii County test positivity highest in state

• Honolulu to require vaccine or negative test at restaurants

• DOH: 553 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 65 on Big Island


• COVID spike saps oxygen supplies in U.S.


• Waimea Town Market closes temporarily due to COVID-19 surge

• DOH: 1,068 new COVID-19 infections statewide, 169 on Big Island


• US hospitals hit with nurse staffing crisis amid COVID

• DOH: 865 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 131 on Big Island


• Hawaii health care workers decry lack of COVID mandates


• Big Island entertainment venues still in flux


• DOH: 499 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 50 on the Big Island


• State launches digital ‘health card’ for vaccination verification

• Summer of COVID hope ends in gloom


• Mayor wants to publicize visitors who opt out of COVID vaccinations, tests

• Biden issues sweeping new vaccine mandates for 100M Americans

• Ige issues mandate for state facilities

• DOH: 747 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 140 on Big Island


The county’s general population is about 62% fully vaccinated, according to the state Department of Health, ranking the Big Island behind both Oahu and Kauai but ahead of Maui. But only those ages 12 and older are eligible for vaccination.


• DOH: 461 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 82 on Big Island


• State ponders Roth’s request to publicize list of those in quarantine; Ige says ‘it’s a balancing act’

• Vaccination, recent negative test rules in place in Honolulu

• DOH: 423 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 41 on Big Island


• Rides for vaccinations: County, Uber partner to provide trasportation for shot-seekers

• COVID-19 cases climb, wiping out months of progress

• DOH: 493 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 89 on Big Island


• COVID cases trend downward, but HMC still over capacity

• DOH: 588 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 96 on Big Island


• COVID-19 surge forces health care rationing in parts of West

• Outbreaks strand some students at home with minimal learning

• DOH: 581 new COVID-19 cases statewide, 89 on Big Island

Ta Da!



For the latest COVID-19 travel-related information, click here.

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