2009 News Stories

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Moloka’i General HospitalIn an island community such as Moloka’i, quality health care is a precious commodity. So there was reason to celebrate on the Friendly Isle as Moloka’i General Hospital (MGH) completed an extensive, multi-phase redevelopment project which upgraded the hospital’s medical facilities and grounds.

Over 300 members of the community attended a recent ceremony at the hospital to commemorate the event. A blessing was performed in similar fashion to a 2005 ceremony honoring the opening of the newly-completed Phase I wing. QMC President Art Ushijima addressed the crowd. State Sen. Kalani English and Lt. Gov. James “Duke” Aiona were also on hand. Letters of congratulations from U.S. Senators Daniel Inouye and Daniel Akaka were read to the audience. MGH became a subsidiary of The Queen’s Health Systems in 1987.

Though a majority of the hospital’s renovations were finished in 2008, MGH staff worked into early 2009, finishing up final projects such as landscaping and updating the physical therapy room to meet hospital standards. The redevelopment project itself stemmed from a self-implemented code compliance survey in 1996.

The project was split into two phases to ensure Molokai’s only hospital and emergency room remained open and fully functional during construction. The first phase saw the construction of a new ER, patient rooms with acute-care beds and a state-of-the-art imaging center. The 12,000 square-foot addition was completed in the summer of 2005.

Moloka’i General Hospital CeremonyPhase II involved renovating existing hospital facilities, which back to the early 1960s. The space now boasts an area for MGH’s award-winning Women’s Health Center, laboratory, special-procedures suite, employee dining room, improved business office and the facility’s first chapel. 

Funding for the $16.5 million renovations was a joint collaboration between the public and private sectors, including The Queen’s Health Systems, the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, Office of Hawaiian Affairs, the State of Hawai’i and the County of Maui. In a generous gesture of support, local photographer Dewitt Jones donated $75,000 of his artwork to the project.

It took seven years of fundraising and four years of construction, but Moloka’i now has a first-rate hospital for its 7,000 residents.

“We are grateful to everyone who shares our commitment to provide quality health care to the people of Moloka’i,” said Janice Kalanihuia, MGH President, in a statement to the media. “Now, Moloka’i General Hospital is poised to serve the community for another 30 to 40 years.”

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