The Queen’s Health Systems (Queen’s), corporate parent of The Queen’s Medical Center (QMC), and North Hawaii Community Hospital held a special internal ceremony this week to mark their new formal affiliation relationship, which took effect on January 15, 2014.
The special internal Hawaiian ceremony held on Tuesday, January 21stat NHCH and led by Auntie ‘Ulu Garmon, a Hawaii Island Cultural Practitioner, was attended by more than 50 hospital staff, including several of Queen’s Administration. “The purpose of this ceremony is to formally acknowledge and welcome the joining of one house with the other,” says Auntie ‘Ulu Garmon. “We ask for growth, longevity, preservation and that there be a reciprocation and an exchange of mana or life force in this new relationship,” said Garmon.
During the ceremony Diane Paloma from Queen’s Native Hawaiian Health Program presented NHCH’s outgoing board chairman Bob Momsen with a “ho`okupu”, or a gift of symbolic significance. “By offering this ho`okupu with items representing our founders Queen Emma and King Kamehameha IV, we symbolically welcome NHCH into The Queen’s Health System’s `ohana,” said Paloma. Attendees participated in a Native Hawaiian ceremony by consuming foods that represent different elements of a successful partnership.
To close the ceremony, Momsen returned the ho`okupu to The Queen’s Health Systems President and Board Chairman, Art Ushijima. This symbolic gesture represents the mutual acceptance and embracing of the new relationship between the two organizations. Ushijima marked the exchange by adding, “This is a great occasion for Queen’s. We look forward to becoming a part of your community and extending the Queen’s mission in North Hawaii.” The Queen’s Health Systems mission is “to fulfill the intent of Queen Emma and King Kamehameha IV to provide in perpetuity quality healthcare services to improve the well-being of Native Hawaiians and all the people of Hawaii.”
On December 16, 2013, Queen’s announced it had officially entered into an affiliation agreement with NHCH. In the agreement, NHCH became a corporate entity under Queen’s, similar to The Queen’s Medical Center and Molokai General Hospital. QMC has had a clinical affiliation with NHCH since 2005.