It’s been about two weeks since the stay-at-home order, and many of us may be feeling anxious, stressed, bored, and lonely. In response, this week’s webinar features Mestisa Gass, PsyD. Program Director, Mental Health America of Hawaiʻi, who will provide strategies and practices of coping with stress and anxiety as we navigate through social distancing, quarantine, and isolation. If you are unable to participate, all of our webinars will be on our website, hiphi.org/covid19. You can also watch our last webinar featuring frontline healthcare if you missed it.

In addition to the mental toll of the virus, the number of cases in Hawai‘i has doubled and the state has recorded five COVID-19 related deaths. With the increasing seriousness of the situation, the state and CDC have issued new guidelines and rules to reduce the spread of disease. We have more information on the latest news below – it will take everyone doing their part to beat this pandemic.

TAKE ACTION
Help University of Hawaii’s National Disaster Preparedness Training Center researchers map out hotspots and track the movement of COVID-19 in Hawaii by filling out a quick, anonymous survey.

Organizations can sign on to a letter urging Congress and the Administration to increase the SNAP benefit levels in the next federal COVID-19 relief package – deadline to sign on is tomorrow, April 7.

FEDERAL UPDATES
The CDC is now recommending that everyone wear a cloth mask when they are in public, whether or not they are sick, to reduce the transmission of the virus from people that may not know they are sick yet. When using a mask, be sure to wear them properly and wash them after use.

It’s important to note that wearing a mask does not protect you from the virus – it prevents you from spreading germs to others. That’s why it’s still important to continue staying at home, practicing social distancing, and frequently washing your hands to protect yourself from the virus.

STATE UPDATES
Governor David Ige expanded the mandatory 14 day self-quarantine to include inter-island travel, which started on April 1 and is in effect through April 30.

DOE added new school sites to pick up grab and go meals – view the latest list here. Please note that they are serving meals Monday through Friday, excluding holidays (April 10 is Good Friday).

HOTELS FOR HEROES
The tourism and visitor industry has partnered on a Hotels for Heroes initiative to to offer complimentary lodging for healthcare workers, first responders, fire fighters, and police officers to protect their families from exposure to the virus. The program is set to start today, April 6, and 33 hotels are participating. Medical and emergency workers interested in making reservations should email hotelsforheroes@hawaiilodging.org.

PUBLIC HEALTH ACTION WEBINAR, 4/8

Missed the webinar? Watch it here.

Stay Home, Stay Health PSA feat. Frank De Lima

Watch the PSA on Youtube!

PUBLIC HEALTH TIP OF THE WEEK

CDC recently recommended that everyone wear a cloth face mask when in public spaces, but masks are in short supply and difficult to acquire. Even if you don’t have a cloth mask already, you can still protect yourself by making a DIY one (here’s some options from the CDC, including no-sew ideas). If you need more help, Kaua‘i Mayor Derek Kawakami has a video where he demonstrates how to cut a T-shirt into a mask.

MORE QUESTIONS ON COVID-19?
Visit Aloha United Way’s free and a confidential statewide helpline:
Call 2-1-1, Text at 877-275-6569 or online at auw211.org.

DO YOU HAVE RESOURCES OR INFORMATION ON COVID-19 TO SHARE?
We are working to create a comprehensive directory of useful resources for the community. We recognize that information is constantly evolving and changing, so if you have any resources or updates we should include in our next weekly email or website, feel free to contact us at covidresponse@hiphi.org.