A healthy attitude – midweek

Its symptoms are acute, plagued by anemic attempts at reform, crippling regulatory mandates and general malaise about sustainability for the future.

But doing so in the face of mounting economic, social and legislative pressures — plus the changes at the White House — makes it a daunting task.

It is said that the United States approaches public health backward. Trip packages to hawaii Our current health care system is set up to treat people after they are sick rather than keeping them well in the first place.


The Trust for America’s Health reports that more than half of Americans are living with one or more serious, chronic diseases, which could have been prevented proactively. All inclusive trip to hawaii for two It also predicts today’s children are on track to be the first in U.S. 7 day hawaii vacation packages history to live shorter, less healthy lives than their parents.

At Kaiser Permanente Hawaii, the visionary voice belongs to Mary Ann Barnes, R.N., M.S.N., president of Kaiser Foundation hospitals and health plan. Hawaii couple vacation packages Starting in this role in June 2014, she leads the second largest health plan in Hawaii, serving 250,000 members and employing more than 4,400 staff and clinicians for its 278-bed hospital and 20 clinics.

Barnes joined Kaiser Permanente in 1974 as an intensive care unit nurse in San Diego and has held progressively responsible positions of leadership throughout California.

Barnes earned her B.S. Hawaii honeymoon in nursing from Arizona State University and an M.S.N. Hawaii best deals in administration from San Diego State University. Hawaii getaways She completed the Harvard Business School Executive Leadership Program and Stanford University’s Executive Business Program.

“I was captivated by health, wellness and healing,” she says. Cheap hotel and flight packages to hawaii “I always looked from the standpoint of how I can make a bigger difference. Hawaii island travel It has served me well.”

Indeed it has. Best deal for hawaii vacation Today Barnes sits at the regional helm of a nearly 60-year-old enterprise with a storied past. Package vacations to hawaii Kaiser Permanente (KP) is regarded the nation’s pioneer in pre-paid industrial insurance and integrated managed care.

KP evolved from private health care coverage for industrialist Henry J. Vacations hawaii specials Kaiser’s construction, shipyard and steel mill workers during the late 1930s and 1940s. Condos in hawaii Kaiser and physician Sidney Garfield formed an insurance consortium to meet workers compensation obligations.

The industrial indemnity prepaid 17.5 percent of premiums to cover work-related injuries, while workers contributed 5 cents per day to cover non-work-related injuries.

The plan eventually expanded to include dependents, making a major shift from industrial medicine to family practice. Hawaii package tours In 1945, the plan was open to public enrollment.

It is comprised of three entities: Kaiser Foundation Health Plan Inc. Hotel flight packages to hawaii (KFHP), Kaiser Foundation Hospitals, and Permanente Medical Groups of physicians.

From this vantage point, Barnes has an insightful view of where health care is and where it is headed. Hawaii holidays We ask her for a pulse of the situation.

“The Affordable Care Act certainly put health care on its head,” she begins. Hawaii all inclusive travel packages “We’ve been sorting out what the rules are, but that could change with the new (governmental) administration. Waikiki hawaii vacation packages We’re waiting to see what happens.

“We need to be flexible and prepared,” she asserts. Vacation on hawaii “Yet the focus must continue to be on affordability, access to care and quality of services.”

But it must be sorted out, according to Barnes, because providers, payers and patients — not Supreme Court judges who interpret the rules — must be the true agents of change.

Critical issues such as the disparity of services on the Neighbor Islands, huge physician shortage particularly in primary care, and case management for chronic disease are high on the priority list.

“We’ve had growth on the Neighbor Islands, adding a clinic in Kona two years ago and opening our first clinic on Kauai earlier this year. Cheap packages to hawaii We will be taking over the Maui county hospital on July 1,” she says.

“We have made a huge investment in technology in all facets of our operations,” Barnes points out. Hawaii accommodation packages “We invest approximately 4-6 percent of revenue each year to maintain and increase health care technology. Affordable hawaiian vacation packages This includes updates to our industry-leading electronic medical record system (KP HealthConnect), and cutting edge diagnostic and treatment tools.” To help address the critical shortage of physicians here, KPH has a residency program that’s currently in its third year.

“As of today, we’re short about 500 physicians in the state,” she points out. All inclusive hawaii vacation packages “On Oahu, about a third of primary care physicians are not taking patients. Hawaii package trips It’s about access to care.

“So there are some incredible opportunities in the state,” she suggests. Best vacation packages to hawaii “There are complexities in Hawaii being so isolated and diverse, but we are hopeful that community collaboration can bring good results.

“We all seek a healthier Hawaii — encompassing mind, body and spirit —from not only individuals but businesses and other stakeholders,” the KP executive heralds. Hawaii deals all inclusive “It must also permeate our community environment, supporting healthy habits in settings such as parks, walking paths and activity centers.”

Health systems like KP are strategically investing capital and resources into creating the futures they desire. Cheap hawaii packages for two These investments require research, intensive planning and tough decisions.

As Hawaii caters to an aging population and transitions to the next generation of health care providers, the leadership and wisdom of administrators such as Barnes will be called upon to make a difference for our community.

American Public Health Association consistently ranks Hawaii as the healthiest state in the nation. Where to travel in hawaii The Aloha State has been in the top six since 1990, largely for its low obesity rates and high mental health ratings.

For that, we are grateful. Best hawaii travel deals So the next time a doctor nags you about not getting enough exercise, for instance, consider the lightheartedness of one islander, who recounts:

“My doctor took one look at my gut and refused to believe that I work out. Holiday packages in hawaii So I listed the exercises I do every day: jump to conclusions, climb the walls, drag my heels, push my luck, bend over backward, run around in circles, put my foot in my mouth, go over the edge and beat around the bush.”

And if you ask us whether health care will be different in the next century, all we can say is, “We’re not sure, but if you call now, you might get an appointment by then.”