Big Island Now poll: What are the top healthcare needs on Hawai‘i Island?
The nonprofit Puna Community Medical Center Foundation has been working to open a hospital clinic that would serve the rural communities of East Hawai‘i.
With a price tag of $160 million, the Puna Community Medical Campus would include a two-story 25-bed facility will be part of a 5-acre campus on land leased from the Hawai‘i Department of Land and Natural Resources, about three-quarters of a mile north of Pāhoa town near the 9-mile marker on Highway 130.
It will house an emergency department, radiology department, surgical department and behavioral health services.
A lack of healthcare resources is a common issue for the state’s neighbor islands. This includes not enough doctors and nurses to take care of patients on Hawai‘i Island. With the goal to break ground on the Puna facility, however, there is hope for expanded services.
During the 2023 legislative session, lawmakers passed bills to fund projects at Hilo Medical Center and Kona Community Hospital that provided funding for infrastructure upgrades. The legislature has also discussed how to expand internet services to rural parts of the island to ensure telehealth is available for everyone.