Mayor Michael Victorino signed revised Public Health Emergency Rules that change the definition of “fully vaccinated” to include getting a booster shot to increase immunity against COVID-19. The rule change goes into effect Jan. 8, 2022.
“This change affects what the Department of Health considers ‘high risk’ businesses in Maui County, including restaurants, bars and gyms,” Mayor Victorino said. “Science says that after the second shot of Pfizer and Moderna vaccinations or the single Johnson and Johnson shot vaccinations weaken after about six months. This rule change recognizes that and requires that businesses ensure that patrons are fully vaccinated or have proof of a negative COVID test within 48 hours. Beginning Jan. 8, that means patrons who seek service indoors need to show proof that they’ve received a booster shot as soon as they are eligible, which means after six months have passed since the last dose or Pfizer or Moderna, or two months after Johnson and Johnson.”
“Vaccination cards show the dates of the last dose, and the date of an individual’s booster shot,” Mayor Victorino said. “Remember, patrons can still dine outdoors without having a vaccination card, or they can get take-out. Our rules reflect the changing conditions during this ongoing pandemic, and the need to protect the health and safety of our residents.”
In November, the state Department of Health announced that CDC data show the primary series of Pfizer and Moderna vaccines offer significant protection against hospitalization and death, but that protection diminishes over time. Booster vaccinations provide additional protection by re-energizing our natural defense systems. (See: https://health.hawaii.gov/news/newsroom/booster-eligibility-expands/)
The revised Public Health Emergency Rules are effective January 8, 2022, and can be found online on the Maui County main web page at mauicounty.gov