Hamakua-Kohala Health purchases Kohala Club Hotel

  • Hamakua-Kohala Health recently purchased the former Kohala Club Hotel to become the new permanent home for the Kohala Health and Wellness Center. (Courtesy photo/Special to West Hawaii Today)

  • Hamakua-Kohala Health recently purchased the former Kohala Club Hotel to become the new permanent home for the Kohala Health and Wellness Center. (Courtesy photo/Special to West Hawaii Today)

Hamakua-Kohala Health recently purchased the former Kohala Club Hotel to become the new permanent home for the Kohala Health and Wellness Center.

With nearly 25% of Hawaii Island residents filing for unemployment due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the reality of thousands losing their health care insurance is a grim reality. The goal is to help lift the anxiety and uncertainty for residents of Hawi and Kapaau to ensure that they don’t need health insurance to access care at new center. It will also enable the center expand and enhance services.

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“We decided to take a leap of faith by borrowing money to secure the property before it was sold to another potential buyer,” said Diana Moriarty, Hamakua-Kohala Health Board Chair.

Fundraising efforts have recently begun to raise the $1.7 million needed to open the center debt-free later this year following the Bank of Hawaii issuing a bridge loan. Monies raised will go toward the purchase of the property, minor ADA renovations and the purchase and installation of new equipment.

“We are humbled by the support that we are already receiving from donors at every level and look forward to sharing more about our vision for this new center in the coming weeks. It will take all of us to make this dream a reality for our community. No gift is too small, and we welcome everyone’s support,” said Irene Carpenter.

Carpenter said it is important to open the center debt-free so that program funds can go directly to patient care and not be diverted to pay for a mortgage. This will ensure that Hamakua-Kohala Health can continue to serve the emerging health care needs of the community.

A capital campaign committee has recently been recruited that includes our Capital Campaign Chair Christine Richardson, RN, and Vice Chairs Ken Kaneshiro, Diana Moriarty, RN, Diane Ashley, Fred Burian, Kaye Lundburg, Dixie Adams, RN and Sara Neely.

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Hamakua-Kohala Health, a community-based health center, provides comprehensive primary and preventative health care at four locations in Kohala, Waimea, Honokaa and Lapahoehoe to persons of all ages, regardless of their ability to pay or health insurance status. Hamakua-Kohala Health sees over 13,000 patients each year.

For more information or to donate, contact Stephanie Dullum at (808) 930-2745 or email sdullum@hamakua-health.org.

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