Kekaha residents line up for virus testing

  • Dennis Fujimoto / The Garden Island

    Jason Yaris of the state Department of Health Kaua‘i District Health Office administers a rapid test to Carlina Vea Saturday as Romang Peake waits her turn during testing in Kekaha.

  • Dennis Fujimoto / The Garden Island

    Dennis Okihara has a rapid test administered by Jason Yaris of the state Department of Health Kaua‘i District Health Office Saturday during testing in Kekaha.

  • Dennis Fujimoto / The Garden Island

    Clayton Dela Cruz has a rapid test administered by Jason Yaris of the state Department of Health Kaua‘i District Health Office Saturday during testing in Kekaha.

KEKAHA — A line of cars stretched along Kekaha Road to get into the parking lot of Kekaha School Saturday morning for free COVID-19 testing.

State Department of Health Kaua‘i District Health Office Officer Dr. Janet Berreman said there have been a low number of cases on the Westside community, not yet classified as a cluster.

The drive-up testing allowed residents to be quickly swabbed from the comfort of their vehicles, though that wasn’t always the case. During the first hour, even one biker and one person rolled in on an electric wheelchair.

The response from the Kekaha community, Berreman said, was greater than anticipated.

The DOH estimated there would be about 250 participants, but doubled that estimate to 500 within the first hour and a half of service. Results for the tests were expected to come in within the day or early today.

One of the pros of having a testing event like this within the community, Berreman said, is accessibility. Pointing to the line of cars Saturday morning, she said that if the community felt like they didn’t need it, they wouldn’t be here.

Today, the county, in partnership with the DOH, hosts free testing at Vidinha Stadium from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The county’s free testing opportunities are every Sunday through the end of the year, at rotating locations. Next week, testing will be held in Kapa‘a at the Bryan J. Baptiste Sports Complex from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Different than the county’s weekly surge-testing events, the tests Saturday were read at the DOH Kuua‘i District Health Office in Lihu‘e. The weekly surge-testing kits must be sent off to the Mainland for results.

For more information on the county’s free surge-testing, visit kauai.gov/test. The county urges those participating in these programs to contact the DOH Kaua‘i District Health Office at 241-3387 if they receive a positive result.

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Sabrina Bodon, public safety and government reporter, can be reached at 245-0441 or sbodon@thegardenisland.com.

5 Comments
  1. Me November 29, 2020 4:25 am Reply

    Keep those numbers rising and who’s gonna pay everyone’s Bill’s when can no work? Gotta be a better way than using an inaccurate testing system.


  2. Kali Yuga November 29, 2020 8:51 am Reply

    Here come more cases! The mayor has to find more reason to shut the island down. These tests don’t even actually test for this specific virus, but instead for traces of similar virus particles. There is a huge percentage of false positives. We have NO hospitalizations. These are all asymptomatic, if they were even real cases.


  3. WestsideResident November 29, 2020 9:27 am Reply

    …what were the results?

    Complete the story please.


  4. RG DeSoto November 29, 2020 4:57 pm Reply

    All this testing using the PCR is feeding right in to Kawakami’s “I am the savior” shut-down mentality. The PCR is known to produce 80-90% false positives when the number of test cycles exceeds 33 amplifications. The politically motivated CDC and other government agencies have called for 40-45 cycles which guarantees the little tyrants, like Kawakami, will have all the excuse they need to further ruin people’s lives.
    He, Kawakami, preaches the “I care about you little people” drivel, yet his action belie his rhetoric. If he did care he would not shut off the island for travelers just as the various industries and businesses were getting wobbly feet under them. And after only a handful of so called cases. Does he even comprehend what he has done? These businesses have spent millions of dollars ramping back up, only to be shut-down after several weeks. All for what are in all probability false positive test results. Now everyone is flocking to the test sites like frightened lemmings…even if they have absolutely no indication of illness.
    This is a disaster for those least able to weather the storm. Of course Kawakami thinks he will have unending access to millions of federal dollars to bribe those he is trashing into thinking he really does care. But monetizing such massive levels of federal debt cannot go on forever…then Kawakami’s (all the political classes actually) false promises and delusions will be exposed for what they are…barbaric insanity.
    RG DeSoto


  5. I saw a Vampire once November 29, 2020 5:51 pm Reply

    Are you kidding me? Why go looking for a virus when there’s no symptoms? Just wanted to be included. Fine. How many infected new cases? This is a waste of energy though.


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