HONOLULU, Hawaii – The decreasing number of long-term care beds available at Hilo Medical Center was discussed at the state capital on Thursday.
In June 2015, the budget-strapped East Hawaii Region of Hawaii Health Systems Corporation announced it was reducing number of Long Term Care Services staffed beds available at Hilo Medical Center, Ka’u Hospital and Hale Ho’ola Hamakua over the next several months. HMC planned to rely on the Regency Pacific to shoulder the demand. The Regency was opening a 100-bed long term care facility on Komohana.
Since that time the hospital has managed to reduce the number of staffed beds even further. But that means some patients are being sent miles away to Ka’u Hospital and Hale Ho’ola Hamakua, creating a hardship on families of the patients, according to complaints received by State Representative Richard Onishi.
Onishi questioned HHSC’s East Hawaii Region CEO Dan Brinkman about the reductions during the joint Ways and Means and Finance Committee informational briefing.