Kauai doctor says follow coronavirus precautions if traveling to a hot spot

Coronavirus

HONOLULU (KHON2) — Nevada dropped all COVID restrictions on Tuesday, June 1, but the state is now seeing a surge in transmission of COVID-19. More than 800 cases were reported on Friday, July 9, the highest for a single day in a month.

Dr. Warren Sparks is part of the state’s vaccination efforts on Kauai. He said those who are traveling to a destination that is considered a hot spot for COVID-19 should keep their masks on whether they are vaccinated or not.

“If I were in Las Vegas, I would certainly wear my mask indoors and on the strip,” Sparks said. “It’s so crowded even outdoors, I’ll be wearing my mask because they have a spike there right now.”

A Boyd Gaming manager said vaccinated guests can remain unmasked inside its properties, which include The Fremont Hotel and Casino as well as the California.

Sparks said people who are fully vaccinated should still keep COVID-19 safety in mind since there is a risk of bringing the virus back home.

“I’m fully vaccinated and I am traveling to Las Vegas, but I have children at home under the age of 12, the vaccine is not yet available to them,” Sparks said. “Or I have kupuna in my home who have not been vaccinated, I’m going to be very careful wearing my mask. “

Sparks said travel is much less of a gamble for those who are vaccinated. Although breakthrough cases — those who are fully vaccinated but still contract COVID-19 — could still happen.

Hawaii has reported 291 breakthrough cases, the Hawaii Department of Health did not say many of those are travel-related. Officials still said that is a very low number and demonstrates the efficiency of the vaccine.

“Roughly four people in every 10,000 vaccinated individuals is getting COVID,” Hawaii Department of Health Director Dr. Libby Char said. “Very, very small numbers, we know the vaccine is safe we know it works to protect you.”

Sparks would advise anyone returning to the islands from a hot spot to try to keep their distance from others for at least three days and follow up with a COVID test for peace of mind.

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