Maui Contact Tracing Expands, Now Utilizing UHMC Facility
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By Wendy Osher
The Maui District Health Office continues to conduct contact tracing operations with the assistance of the Hawaiʻi National Guard and University of Hawaiʻi Maui College.
Heidi Taogoshi, public health nursing supervisor for the Maui District Health Office provided us with an update saying, “We have about 24 case investigators. Primarily they are made up of my public health nursing staff and other employees that work for the Maui District Health Office. We recently were very fortunate to have the National Guard come on board to help us by making the daily monitoring calls to identify close contacts to cases.. they’re making almost 200 calls a day now.”
Hawaiʻi National Guard Lt. Col. Cesar Pudiquet, commander Task Force Maui said 20 to 30 guardsmen have been trained to assist with contact tracing on Maui in addition to other missions on island.
“We’ve also got airport missions, we’ve got screenings at the harbor, at the courthouses. This is one of the things–COVID mapping has been a priority given to us by our leadership,” he said.
Taogoshi said the department is also hiring 12 temporary staff that will start with orientation next week.
While organization and leadership issues are being reported at the state level, Taogoshi said Maui operations are currently running smoothly.
The contact tracing team is working seven days a week.