Hawaii Mulling Mandating Booster Shots for Visitors to Be Considered ‘Fully Vaccinated’

By Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Reporter
Zachary Stieber covers U.S. and world news. He is based in Maryland.
January 19, 2022 Updated: January 19, 2022

Hawaii has not at this time required visitors get a COVID-19 vaccine booster shot to be considered “fully vaccinated” but is considering such a requirement, a state official said on Wednesday.

“Hawaii is not requiring booster shots as part of the state’s Safe Travels program. However, that requirement is under consideration. Stay tuned,” Brooks Baehr, administrative assistant for COVID-19 and pandemic response for the Hawaii Department of Health, told The Epoch Times in an email.

Some news outlets had reported that the state was requiring boosters for visitors who want to avoid quarantining for five days and don’t want to submit a negative COVID-19 test.

Such visitors must be fully vaccinated, which currently means having received two doses of the Moderna or Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines, or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson jab.

The outlets cited comments by Hawaii Gov. David Ige, a Democrat, who last week said Hawaii was “looking at the boosters and what the CDC is now saying about up to date vaccinations.”

“We want to see a booster shot for those who are fully vaccinated within a five or six months of completing their vaccination regimen, and we are looking to see what actions are necessary to implement that in Safe Travels,” Ige said during an online discussion.

If the definition of fully vaccinated is changed, people would be warned at least two weeks ahead of time, Ige said.

Hawaii has imposed some of the strictest requirements of any U.S. state during the pandemic in a bid to curb the spread of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, which causes the disease COVID-19.

State rules force travelers to fill out a “travel and health form” that includes information like their name, telephone number, and date of birth.

Travelers who have tried bypassing the screening using fake vaccination cards have been arrested and sentenced to jail time if convicted.

Hawaii is a set of islands about 2,500 miles from the coast of California that had a population of approximately 1.4 million in 2020.

Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber covers U.S. and world news. He is based in Maryland.