One Day Away: Maui Hospital On Cusp of New Management

June 30, 2017, 10:50 AM HST · Updated June 30, 1:12 PM
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Starting tomorrow, July 1, 2017, the Maui Memorial Medical Center, Kula Hospital, and Lānaʻi Community Hospital will be part of the Maui Health System a subsidiary of Kaiser Permanente, which assumes operations of the three facilities under a public-private partnership approved by lawmakers last year.

Maui Now graphic.

Maui Health System has more than 1,500 employees and works with hospital-based physicians and clinicians and community physicians, including more than 1,000 primary and specialty care providers.

About 97% of current facility employees have accepted job offers to continue employment with Maui Health System. Credentialing, training, and on-boarding activities for these employees have been underway since January.

*Below is a video interview conducted by Maui Now’s Wendy Osher with Dr. David Ulin (Maui Health System chief medical director)  who helps to answer many community questions about tomorrow’s transition.

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The Maui facilities serve over 11,000 inpatients with more than 45,000 people visiting the emergency room each year. MMMC is a Level III Trauma Center, with the 2nd highest acuity and 2nd busiest Emergency Department in the state.

Ahead of the transition, the Maui Memorial Medical Center Foundation thanked hospital staff and administration, Maui Regional Board, Maui legislators and community leaders for their “vision and diligence” in creating a “historic partnership” for the hospital.

“The Foundation looks forward to working with Maui Health System and our community, to strengthen and expand health care services for all of Maui’s ‘ohana and visitors – regardless of one’s insurance provider, or even ability to pay,” said Tamar Goodfellow, MMMC Foundation Board President. “The MMMC Foundation will continue to accelerate improvement at our community hospital by purchasing state-of- the-art, life-saving medical equipment, supporting patient assistance funds, funding training and education for clinical staff, and sponsoring community outreach programs.”

On July 1 the hospital will begin working through a long list of priorities – expanding stroke, cardiovascular, orthopedics and trauma programs, reducing ER wait times, creating more integrated care for moms and babies, recruiting and filling vacant staff positions, and updating aging facilities.

“The needs of our hospital are great – greater than any one organization can provide for alone,” said Lisa Varde, MMMC Foundation Executive Director. “Community support of our hospital is vital in order to keep up with fast-moving technology, to attract and retain high quality staff and to improve and expand services. To create and maintain a state-of- the-art hospital open and available for all of us here on Maui, we must all work together – Maui Health System, the State, and our entire Maui community.”

Maui Memorial Medical Center Foundation is an independent 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting the health and wellness of the community by ensuring Maui Memorial Medical Center has the resources needed to provide the highest level of medical care.

Frequently Asked Questions

If I’m not a KP member can I still go to the hospitals? Yes. These hospitals remain community hospitals, open to all – regardless of health insurance coverage.

If I am a KP member, should I go to the hospitals for all my care? There is no change for you. You can visit your Kaiser Permanente doctor as usual. You can go to the same Kaiser Permanente clinic you visit now. You can schedule appointments at kp.org/appointments. You also can call 808-243-6000. (TTY, call 711.)

Will my non-KP physician still be able to see his patients at the hospitals? Yes. You’ll see many familiar faces at our hospitals, including the physicians and providers you have come to trust, working alongside physicians and providers from the community to care for our patients

Will checking in and discharge process at the hospital be different? Will billing be different? The process will be very similar to what you experienced before. For questions about your hospital bill, please contact Patient Financial Services at 808-242-2010. Maui Memorial Medical Center will bill your health plan carrier(s) according to the information provided at registration. You’ll be asked to present your current health plan coverage cards and to pay all copays, deductibles, coinsurance, and fees for noncovered services when registering and checking in for services.

What about my friends and family who work at the hospital, will they keep their jobs? Earlier this year, all employees who currently work at the facilities received an offer of employment to continue their service with Maui Health System. Approximately 97 percent chose to accept their offer. Credentialing, training, and onboarding activities for these employees have been underway since January.

Does this change mean we’ll have more specialty services available on Maui? Maui Health System is positioned to expand access to specialty care, promote health and well-being in schools and communities, and champion innovation and care improvement. Maui Health System is committed to keeping as much care as possible on Maui and Lanai so that patients can be near family and friends.

What physical improvements (expansion and renovation) do you have planned for Kula Hospital? For Maui Memorial Medical Center? Maui Health System is proud to invest in our people, services and facilities. Our first goal is a seamless and safe transition for our patients and staff. We look forward to sharing our vision after the transfer.

Who can I call if they have questions?  For Maui Memorial Medical Center questions, call 808-244-9056. For questions about Kaiser Permanente health plans, call Member Services toll free at 1-800-966-5955 (TTY, call 711), Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday, 8 a.m. to noon.

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