Moloka`i Community Rural Health Community Association 2017-03-01T01:04:26+00:00

Moloka’i Community Rural Health Association

Lead Person:
William Akutagawa, Interim Facilitator
P. O. Box 130, Kaunakakai, HI  96748
Phone:  (808) 560-3653

MCRHA – Provider Directories













Aging with Aloha Directory

The Aging with Aloha Coalition in conjunction with the Maui County Office on Aging and the ADRC have developed a provider’s directory to connect the various service providers with the Kupuna who need their services the most.

Download a copy of the 2011 Directory
2011_AWA_Directory FINAL DOCUMENT 9-16


Children & Youth Services

Maui County Human Services has compiled a list of resources that serve the needs of children and youth in our county.

Download the Directory for Children and Youth Services


MCRHA – Initiatives/Successes

Telecare is Smart Business
Connecting patients to services via electronic means is becoming a viable solution to service delivery…especially in Rural Areas. Read more to learn how telecare is impacting communities around the globe.

  • The New England Health Care Institute reports televisits allow 3 to 5 more visits in the home than standard visits… the hospital readmission rates for heart failure related patients using telecare monitoring is 50-60 percent lower than patients under standard treatment.
  • The highest ranking doctor of the 14,000 that work for Kaiser, says that telecare enhances the relationship between the physician and the patient.
  • Telecare is as green as wind power and walking. By using telemedicine versus automobile access to care, Wales reduced pollution by 5500 lbs. of CO2 in one month – Journal of Telemedicine
  • Telecare offers a Return on Investment versus standard care in the range of 1.3 to 2.5. (NEHI).
    The range of cost estimates for the current market varieties of home telecare with monitoring are from $150 to $1,400 per month

MCRHA – Initiatives/Successes

Preparing for the Big Boom

Silver Tsunami, Age Wave, or Baby Boomers, however you say it, babies born after World War II begin to reach 65 next year. To navigate these uncharted waters, the Maui County Office on Aging has adopted a three-part plan to address the service needs of the greatest wave of the 60 and older population in history.

If we are to succeed in meeting the service needs of Baby Boomers, we must provide options that maximize health, independence, consumer choice, and aging-in-place,” said County Executive on Aging Deborah Arendale.

Aging and Disability Resource Centers

She indicated that ongoing federal funding hinges on engaging volunteers of all ages and combining services for elders and individuals of all ages with physical, mental and developmental disabilities. The centerpiece to this new model places Aging and Disability Resource Centers in every community across the US to centralize access to services and decrease duplication through an unprecedented cooperative among aging networks and all levels of government.

ADRCs are already in the works across Hawaii, with a statewide website ( and phone number (643-ADRC) that provide information and easy access to services for Maui’s aging and disabled populations. In the next few years, MCOA will shut its doors at One Main Plaza, to open as an ADRC site, where consumers will be able to obtain services for elders and the disabled of any age.

Before Maui’s ADRC “goes live,” Arendale said partners need cross training so that each agency understands the others’ services and processes. As soon as January 2011, new software will ease service intake, referral and authorization and eliminate paper and printing costs.

Aging in Place

Along with the ADRC concept, other cost-saving trends include Aging in Place, Community Living, and Collaborative Hospital Discharge Planning programs, Menehune Helpers, Better Choices – Better Aging, and ramped up support for family caregivers.

Every service, program, and product endorsed or implemented by MCOA and its service providers serve to assist Maui County’s seniors to “age in place,” that is to live in the comfort of their own homes as long as appropriate,” said Arendale.

Collaborative Hospital Discharge Planning will reduce expensive re-hospitalizations and provide in-home technology so medical staff can monitor a patient’s status. The Community Living Program will give eligible consumers funds for authorized services to employ agencies, friends, or family to deliver the services.

MCOA continues to promote overall health and wellness in new ways by expanding the Better Choice – Better Health, a disease self management program to keep people active, healthy, and socially engaged.

Strengthening volunteer forces

Not last, and not least, Menehune Helpers will utilize a volunteer website to recruit volunteers to assist seniors and folks with disabilities through inter-agency partnerships with the county’s Volunteer Center, Retired and Senior Volunteer Program, and Na Hoaloha, among others.

Baby Boomers transformed society, and the aging network is expanding and transforming service delivery to provide more choices, control, and independence to them.

MCRHA – Community Profiles





















Maui County Doctor Supply & Demand

Maui County experiences a severe shortage of physicians of all types. From OBGYN’s to Audiologist, Maui’s unmet physician need is extremely high when compared to national averages.

Click for detailed information on Maui’s physician shortages.


MCRHA – Community Profiles





















Physician Shortages

The entire State of Hawaii experiences notable physician shortages which greatly impacts the state’s ability to deliver quality care in rural areas.  Click for a graph showing the physician shortages statewide and by county.


MCRHA – Community Profiles





















How Healthy is Rural Maui

The definition of rural typically used by the US government relies on Census data.  If a city has a population over 150,000, then the city and the county where it is located are declared to be a Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) and therefore not rural.  The definition applied to the County of Maui means that all of county is classified as rural.


MCRHA – Community Profiles





















Koi Like the Fish

In a campaign to raise awareness about the various types of elder abuse, the Maui County Office on Aging is partnering with mission-aligned agencies during community viewings of “Koi, Like the Fish,” a locally-produced film on elder abuse.

Shining Light on Elder Abuse

In a campaign to raise awareness about the various types of elder abuse, the Maui County Office on Aging is partnering with mission-aligned agencies during community viewings of “Koi, Like the Fish,” a locally-produced film on elder abuse.

Koi, Like the Fish portrays the painful challenges and stresses of long-term caregiving. It was written and produced by Maui playwright Keali’iwahine Hokoana, directed by Kim Compoc, and funded by the Maui County Office on Aging and the Hawaii Executive Office on Aging.

MCOA is in the process of distributing 200 DVD copies of the film to agencies in Maui County and the State of Hawaii.  Community viewings will be followed by facilitated discussions to educate audiences about what to look for and where to turn if someone they know is at risk.

The cast includes George Kaimiola as Uncle Koi; Venus Rosetti-Hill as the wanted-to-do-good-but became-overwhelmed niece, Yo; Derek Nakagawa as Bryce, the down-on-his-luck nephew; Dayne Bullock as the busy-with-his-own-life son, Guy; Cheri Nashiwa as the gate-keeping-postal-carrier-friend, Jaime; and Cyndi Davis as Koi’s disappeared-until-she-wanted-something former spouse, Sophie.

The character dynamics of the play are spellbinding. The plot is entertaining humorous at times; heartbreaking at others. Hokoana cleverly delivers a poignant message regarding subtle as well as overt ways that financial stress and the pressures of Caregiving can quickly overwhelm even the strongest of families.

Community partners that have participated in public presentations sponsored by MCOA have included Adult Protective Services, Alzheimer’s Association, Legal Aid Society of Hawaii, Maui Adult Day Care Centers, Maui Police Department, Public Health Nursing, and Victim Witness Protection.

The Maui County Office on Aging invites community organizations, school faculty, and clergy to call 270-7755 or email for more information or to schedule a community viewing.

MCRHA – Community Profiles





















Maui Rural Notes and Stats

People in underserved rural and urban areas often receive stroke treatment in primary care or emergency settings, where the misdiagnosis rate may be as high 30%.  The American Heart Association recommends the use of telemedicine to help health workers care for stroke patients in underserved (rural) areas.

AARP Survey: Sixty per cent of Hawaii residents say they couldn’t afford even one year of private nursing home care – which can run as high as $107,000.  Four in 10 aren’t confident that they can pay for a year of in-home care provided by a nurse or personal care aid.

Hawai’i’s rural counties experience a shortage of dentists, with about 60 dentists per 100,000. Hawai’i, Kaua’i, and Maui Counties are each designated Dental Health Professional Shortage Areas by the federal Health Resource and Service Administration (HRSA).

While the number of registered nurses (RNs) in Hawai’i has increased in recent years (totaling almost 12,000 in 2007), only about 81 percent are employed in nursing. O’ahu has the highest concentration of RNs; Maui County the lowest. Hawai’i ranks 41st among all states, with 75 employed nurses per 10,000 residents.  The U.S. rate is 82 per 10,000 residents.

From Na Pu’uwai:

When compared to the U.S. all race population, Native Hawaiians have death rates:

  • 44% higher for heart disease,
  • 39% higher for cancer,
  • 31% higher for strokes and
  • 196% higher for diabetes.

For pure Hawaiians, the situation is worse.

O’ahu has approximately 3.6 physicians per 1,000 population compared to about 2.1 physicians per 1,000 population in the rural counties of Hawai’i, Kaua’i, and Maui.   While Hawai’i’s rural counties have more family practice/general medicine physicians per capita than O’ahu, these rural counties have far fewer specialists available to care for residents.
However, Hawai’i’s rural counties experience a shortage of dentists, with about 60 dentists per 100,000. Hawai’i, Kaua’i, and Maui Counties are each designated Dental Health Professional Shortage Areas by the federal Health Resource and Service Administration (HRSA).