Healthcare & Pharmaceuticals

Hawaii to reimpose COVID-19 restrictions as Delta variant surges

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A surfboard concession stand is closed on Waikiki Beach due to the business downturn caused by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Honolulu, Hawaii, U.S. April 28, 2020. Picture taken April 28, 2020. REUTERS/Marco Garcia

Aug 11 (Reuters) - Hawaii will re-impose COVID-19 restrictions limiting social gatherings to avert straining the state's healthcare, Governor David Ige said on Tuesday, as the rapid spread of the Delta variant of the coronavirus pushed cases and hospitalizations in the United States to a six-month high.

"I'll be signing an executive order that will limit social gatherings, effective immediately," Ige said in a tweet.

In June, social gatherings were increased to 25 indoors and 75 outdoors statewide but now it will be capped to no more than 10 indoors and 25 outdoor.

Hawaii, with more than 60% of population fully vaccinated, has witnessed a rise in cases by 168% between July 26 and August 8, according to the state's department of health.

The latest guidelines will reduce the indoor capacity for bars, gyms, restaurants, and social establishments to 50%, Ige added.

"Counties will review proposals for all professionally sponsored events (bigger than 50 people) and ensure appropriate safe practices will be implemented," the governor said.

Reporting by Aishwarya Nair in Bengaluru

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