(BIVN) – A Draft Environmental Assessment has been published examining the relocation of the a health clinic in Wiamea.
The Waimea Nui Regional Community Development Initiative is proposing to relocate the Kīpuka o ke Ola Clinic from Mamalahoa Highway to a 2-acre parcel in the Puʻukapu Tract of Hawaiian Homestead Land. The new location is about a mile and a half away from the present location.
The Kīpuka o ke Ola Clinic has outgrown their current facility and needs more space, the document says. The new location will enable the clinic to serve more patients, “as an increase in number of patients is anticipated to occur” as the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands awards more homestead lots in the Waimea region.
Kīpuka o ke Ola, or KOKO, “provides cultural, spiritual, medical, and psychological services to all residents of North Hawaiʻi with a special emphasis for the Kānaka Maoli,” according to the clinic’s mission statement.
The draft EA was prepared in accordance with State law, since the proposed clinic relocation will require the use of State lands, and the use of State funds. From the document:
The proposed action includes the development of an approximate 9,600 square feet (SF), onestory building for the KOKO Clinic within a 2-acre portion of TMK (3) 6-4-038:011. The new clinic would include treatment rooms to provide primary care, psychiatry, psychology, women’s health, la‘au lapa‘au, lomilomi and acupuncture services. In addition, the clinic would expand its Ulu Laukahi Program that addresses chronic care disease management, which would require a certified kitchen, workout facilities, and meeting rooms.
The expansion of the KOKO Clinic would result in an additional five full-time positions to increase the clinic’s treatment capacity to 800 additional patients. Operations at the clinic would remain the same; Monday through Friday from 8:00AM to 5:00PM.
The Department of Hawaiian Home Lands anticipates a Finding of No Significant Impact. The EA consultant is SSFM International, Inc. Public comments on the proposal are due by December 8, 2022.