Health Department identifies 2 proms as source of COVID, flu clusters

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) — In its latest cluster report, the state Department of Health said two balls are the cause of the COVID and flu clusters.

Health officials said both events were for high schools on Oahu.

The DOH said one prom had 300 people in attendance — six tested positive for COVID and four tested for the flu. One person tested positive for both.

Officials said the school called the health department for help after 37 students who attended the prom called in sick with common respiratory symptoms.

The state said due to limited flu tests and home test reports, the actual number of infections was likely higher than reported.

Officials said about 57% of prom attendees had received an initial round of COVID-19 vaccines. Participants also reported that the use of masks and social distancing were not practiced or enforced.

Meanwhile, at another ball that had 600 people, the health ministry said 10 had tested positive for COVID. The DOH said three other participants were symptomatic and epidemiologically linked. Three secondary cases were also reported among household contacts.

Officials said of those who tested positive for COVID, only one was unvaccinated.

The Department of Health encourages anyone attending large school events to get vaccinated and to wear face coverings when indoors.

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