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DOH News Release: Health Director Provides Details on Move to Vaccination Phase 1c, “Breakthrough” Case of COVID-19 in Vaccinated Individual

Posted on Mar 12, 2021 in Latest Department News, Newsroom

HONOLULU- Hawai‘i Department of Health (DOH) Director Dr. Elizabeth Char provides detail on the state’s upcoming move to Phase 1c while appearing in a new DOH communication platform called The Weekly Dose.

Char also discusses the latest COVID-19 Weekly Cluster Report, which includes investigation into a “breakthrough” case of COVID-19 in a fully vaccinated Hawai‘i resident.

“The really important thing is that being vaccinated prevents us from serious illness, hospitalization, and death. That’s what we really need the vaccines to do for us,” Char said. “We have seen cases where people are fully vaccinated, and we have some cases in Hawai‘i now where people got vaccinated…traveled to the mainland, and we think they got ill on the mainland. Thankfully, their symptoms were very mild, which is exactly the protection the vaccine affords, but you can get infected with COVID.”

While discussing Phase 1c, which opens March 15, Char said those age 65 and older and those with one or more of a few specific chronic medical conditions are atop the list of those who should be vaccinated next.

Those who can make appointments immediately include:

  • Individuals age 65 and older
  • Individuals on dialysis
  • Individuals with severe respiratory disease who are on oxygen
  • Individuals undergoing chemotherapy or other infusion therapy

People with other chronic conditions also qualify for vaccine in Phase 1c, but not immediately. Data shows a correlation between medical conditions and age, so age will serve as a surrogate for many of these other chronic medical conditions. People with these chronic illnesses will be eligible for vaccine by age in descending order.

Essential workers not included in earlier phases are also part of Phase 1c. They will continue to register through employers.

“We will get to everybody. We are very happy that people want to get vaccinated. We look forward to vaccinating everyone who is interested,” Char said.

DOH also announced that on the week of March 15, 64,670 doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are expected to arrive in Hawai‘i.

Click here to download video of Director Char discussing these updates

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Media Contact:

Brooks Baehr

Communications Office

Email: [email protected]

Phone: (808) 586-4417