Target: Loretta Fuddy, Hawaii State Health Director
Goal: Commend Hawaii hospitals for conducting patient study to determine top health issues
Over the course of nearly one year, almost every hospital within the state of Hawaii participated in a study to identify the top health issues among Hawaii patients. The results of this study will improve access to and quality of care. State officials have gone as far as to state that the results of this study offer the first clear and comprehensive picture of Hawaii’s greatest health issues.
This study was conducted in accordance with the Affordable Care Act, which requires every private, non-profit hospital to study the communities they serve in order to determine what their most prominent health issues are. Then, the state must create a plan to address these issues. Although this is a requirement for all states, Hawaii was one out of only two that actually completed the study.
Through the study, health officials have learned that Hawaii’s top concern is mental health, followed by heart failure and bacterial pneumonia. Over the past few years, the number of patients hospitalized for mental health reasons has increased by twenty percent. Contributing to this issue are the recent cuts in community programs that battle these concerns. The results of the study show that these budget cuts actually drove up the overall costs of healthcare; community programs prevent vulnerable patients from being hospitalized by offering support sooner.
The study has further emphasized the belief that focus should be placed on preventative, community-based care rather than acute care. These goals will be accomplished through collaboration and cooperation amongst the state’s health groups, a decision that would not have been made without the patient study. By taking the time to complete the study, the people of Hawaii will have better access to the care they need, and will have more resources at their disposal. In addition, the state will be able to allocate funding to the programs that need the most help and reach the most people, allowing resident tax dollars to be spent in the most effective manner.
By signing the petition below, you will commend Hawaii hospitals on their dedication to the people they serve, and on following through on the Affordable Care Act by completing the patient study.
Dear Loretta Fuddy,
The findings recently released from the Affordable Care Act patient study are alarming. The increase in patients hospitalized for mental health treatment is unacceptable and avoidable. If Hawaii hospitals had not followed through on the study, this crisis could have gone undetected, and the people of Hawaii would have continued to be without much needed resources and support.
By following through on the study and creating a collaborative and community-based action plan to address this issue, the state is putting its people first. This study allows the state to better allocate funding and help improve the health of all of the people in Hawaii. We would like to commend you on your efforts and commitment to the community.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Vic via Flickr