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10% of newly reported COVID-19 cases are reinfections, Hawaiʻi health officials say

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AP Photo/Audrey McAvoy
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The state Department of Health says about 10% of newly reported COVID-19 cases are reinfections.

The DOH began tracking reinfections in September 2020, but only recently added the data to the state’s publicly available COVID-19 dashboard.

“Reinfections were rare early in the pandemic," state Epidemiologist Dr. Sarah Kemble said in a press release. "Reinfection statistics were relatively insignificant. However, the percentage of COVID-19 cases involving people who have had prior infection has increased over time."

To date, the state has reported 355,959 COVID cases, with 10,995 being classified as reinfections.

Reinfections are only counted if a new infection occurs 90 days after the first case.

Reinfections represent about 3% of all total reported cases.

“The data on reinfections underscores what we have been saying; that limited immunity from previous infection only lasts so long. Regardless of whether a person has had COVID-19 in the past, they should stay up to date on their vaccinations and boosters to get increased protection from severe illness and hospitalization," Kemble said.

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Hawaiʻi Department of Health
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Hawaiʻi COVID-19 data on Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2022.

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