HONOLULU (KHON2) — Gov. David Ige has appointed Lt. Gov. Josh Green as the administration’s liaison between the state and healthcare community as it pertains to COVID-19 preparedness and response, effective immediately.
Currently, there are no confirmed COVID-19 cases in Hawai‘i — however, the virus is spreading internationally, and suspected community spread in the continental United States emphasizes the need for Hawai‘i to prepare for a potential outbreak.
“As we continue to ramp up our statewide efforts to address the growing COVID-19 threat, we are doing everything in our power to prepare for any possible cases and the resulting impact on our healthcare system,” Ige said. “Because Lt. Gov. Green is a physician, he is uniquely positioned to act as our liaison with healthcare officials across the state.”
Specifically, Green will evaluate the medical community’s readiness to deliver care to individuals who test positive for COVID-19. He will also evaluate the current equipment supply, coordinate efforts to secure additional equipment as needed and advocate for appropriation funding at state and federal levels, in cooperation with Gov. Ige and Hawaii’s congressional delegation.
“Hawai‘i has a robust healthcare community that trains and actively prepares for these situations, but as we face a potential COVID-19 outbreak in Hawai‘i, it’s important to remember our healthcare community is our first line of defense,” said Green. “It’s imperative we do a full evaluation of their current supply and needs to ensure they’re supported and any gaps in preparedness are alleviated. I have a longstanding relationship with many in our healthcare community and look forward to working with them in this capacity.”