COVID-19 inmate recoveries increase to 96 percent

The Hawaii Department of Public Safety (PSD) Health Care Division is working with the Hawaii Department of Health (DOH) to conduct mass testing for COVID-19 at all correctional facilities statewide. The broad-based testing being administered by PSD health care and security staff has moved to the Halawa Correctional Facility (HCF) on Oahu and Kulani Correctional Facility (KCF) on Hawaii Island.

Waiawa Correctional Facility (WCF) was the first to undergo mass testing and as previously reported, all 229 inmate tests at WCF were negative. Of the 98 staff results were received, 97 were negative and 1 was positive.

“The broad-based testing was expertly coordinated and executed by the WCF security staff, and the PSD Health Care Division last week. Halawa and Kulani were ready to go next and I am confident both facilities will follow through, if needed, with their pandemic plan to isolate, quarantine and cohort inmates,” said Maria Cook, Deputy Director for Administration/Acting Director. “All credit goes to the facility wardens, nursing, mental health, and security teams who did all the planning and are administering the testing program in their facilities.”

The order of the facilities next in line for testing is still being worked out. The test results are anticipated to take up to 3 days to receive. PSD is also working with DOH and the Hawaii National Guard to coordinate the testing of correctional officers and staff.

The outbreak at the Oahu Community Correctional Center (OCCC) is contained. There are no new positive results to report for staff or inmates. There are currently no inmates hospitalized. Over 96% of all inmates who tested positive have recovered. Total PSD staff recoveries increased to 75.

Total PSD COVID-19 active and recovered cases as of 9/21/20:

*Administration Division includes administrative services, fiscal, personnel,

training and staff development and the offices under the Director.

**Numbers are subject to change as pending results are received.

For more information on PSD’s planning and response to COVID-19, inmate testing data, and information detailing the efforts made to safeguard the inmates, staff and public, visit our webpage at:

IRS provides final regulations on deductions for estates and non-grantor trusts,

including excess deductions on termination

The Internal Revenue Service today issued final regulations that provide guidance for decedents’ estates and non-grantor trusts clarifying that certain deductions of such estates and non-grantor trusts are not miscellaneous itemized deductions.

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Acts (TCJA) prohibits individuals, estates, and non-grantor trusts from claiming miscellaneous itemized deductions for any taxable year beginning after Dec. 31, 2017, and before Jan. 1, 2026.

Specifically, the final regulations clarify that the following deductions are allowable in figuring adjusted gross income and are not miscellaneous itemized deductions:

• Deductions for costs paid or incurred in connection with the administration of the estate or trust which would not have been incurred if the property were not held in such estate or non-grantor trust.

• The deduction concerning the personal exemption of an estate or non-grantor trust.

• The distribution deductions for trusts distributing current income.

• The distribution deductions for trusts accumulating income.

In addition, the final regulations provide guidance on determining the character and amount of, as well as the manner for allocating, excess deductions that beneficiaries succeeding to the property of a terminated estate or non-grantor trust may claim on their individual income tax returns.

For more information about this and other TCJA provisions, visit

Two reports detailing in-depth assessments of conditions and protocols at the Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home (YOSVH) in Hilo, have been developed. The assessments were conducted separately by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Hawai‘i Emergency Management Agency (HI-EMA). The VA and HI-EMA assessment reports are posted below.

The Dept. of Health’s (DOH) Office of Health Care Assurance (OHCA) is preparing a report on its inspection of infection control measures based on State and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services standards and requirements. The OHCA inspection report is still undergoing internal review and will be shared soon after YOSVH receives it. The home is operated by Avalon Health Group, under contract to the State of Hawai‘i.

Each of the two assessments highlights different observations, and in some cases places more emphasis on certain factors over others. Dr. K. Albert Yazawa, conducted the HI-EMA assessment and wrote, “I believe the nursing home culture at YOSHV was one that remained entrenched in pre-COVID norms of respecting individual resident rights over the health of the general population.” HI-EMA’s involvement was requested by the Healthcare Association of Hawai‘i and Dr. Yazawa collaborated closely with the VA assessment team.

The VA report noted “There was very little proactive preparation/planning for COVID. Many practices observed seemed as if they were a result of recent changes. Even though these are improvements, these are things that should have been in place from the pandemic onset and a major contributing factor towards the rapid spread. A basic understanding of segregation and workflow seemed to be lacking even approximately 3 weeks after first positive.”

“Staff were in-serviced on facility policies and procedures, but it appears there was no follow-up to ensure appropriate behaviors or enforcement,” according to the OHCA report; further noting, “The staff received education on COVID-19 Infection and Control during a meeting on June 10 to June 15, 2020.” That meeting included the Resident Screening Tool – keeping COVID out by detecting cases quickly and stopping transmission.” The HI-EMA assessment indicates in June full facility staff and resident mass testing was conducted and all tests came back negative.

The VA team sent seven medical and health care experts to visit YOSVH on Sept. 11. At that time the team reported ten (10) residents had died from coronavirus and another 35 were positive. The number of recovered patients and the status of the home’s staff members are contained in the VA report.

Neither the VA or HI-EMA report pinpoints the exact sources of infection. Both reports indicate some patients may have been exposed in early August after going for dialysis in Hilo.

Both the VA and HI-EMA assessments recommend immediate discontinuation of nebulizer use, with the HI-EMA report stating, “Discontinue all nebulizer treatments. This decision is not voluntary.”

The Veterans Administration formed a 20-person “Tiger Team” to help implement recommendations, provide training and oversight, and to provide needed staffing support and respite, at YOSVH.

Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home Report
Download • 199KB
Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home - HI-EM
Download • 2.27MB

  • Flickr Photo Albums
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Twitter

Hawai`i State Capitol
415 South Beretania St.
Honolulu, HI 96813

Copyright 2019 Hawai`i Senate Majority