Lawmakers Take Up Maui Hospital Controversy

Robert Valencia
Robert Valencia

HONOLULU (KHNL)- Bureaucracy. It's a word none of us like to hear.

Supporters say doctors at neighbor island hospitals aren't getting what they need for patients, because of too much bureaucracy.

"For better patient care, we live at the bedside, we live at our offices, and that's where healthcare starts, with a patient doctor relationship, and builds from there, said Dr. Lynda Dolan, Chief of Staff at Hilo Medical Center."

The bill would localize the decision making process for patient care. Some Maui residents have been trying for years to get an additional hospital. This bill could make that happen.

"Its touted as the Maui bill, but its not the Maui bill, they thank goodness spearhead this to start it, and we've kind of jumped on the bandwagon to support it because we really feel its a good thing for all of the regions," said Dolan.

Opponents say the plan won't cut bureaucracy -- just create more.

"The bureaucracy that could be created starts to take away from what's most important, patient focus. We need to be focused on the patient," said Tom Driscol, Hawaii Health Systems Corporation CEO and president.

To do their job, the doctors we spoke with say things need to change, so that they can take care of their patients.

"Because the patients are it. It's not the CEO; it's not even the physician. It's the patient and we're ultimately and ethically responsible for caring for them and understanding that's where it all starts."