OAKLAND, Calif. - Kaiser Permanente, one of America's leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans, is introducing a new generation of mobile health. A first-of-its-kind, 500-square-foot, 10-wheel mobile medical vehicle is being shipped to its home island of Hawaii, known to many as the Big Island, where it will improve health care access for thousands of Kaiser Permanente members and the uninsured.
First-year projections indicate an estimated 12,000 Hawaii residents, Kaiser Permanente members and qualified uninsured will benefit from the broad range of screenings and services available on the Mobile Health Vehicle. The vehicle boasts the full capabilities of Kaiser Permanente HealthConnect®, Kaiser Permanente's comprehensive electronic health record system, giving the mobile team the same real-time access to critical member health care data that clinic and hospital-based staff would see. Also, a digital mammography unit will take the latest technology in breast cancer detection on the road to women of the Big Island.
"This island of Hawaii's health disparity issues surrounding cancer prevention screenings, and its challenging geography, made it the logical location for Kaiser Permanente Hawaii's mobile health services," said Susan Ganz, Kaiser Permanente Hawaii executive director, Community Benefit and Service Delivery Planning. "Kaiser Permanente is furthering its commitment to healthy communities by taking prevention and health care on the road to our members and the uninsured via our Mobile Health Vehicle."
The million-dollar unit will be staffed by a mobile health team of a nurse practitioner, medical assistant and mammography technologist, with physician services available as well. The team will have access to state-of-the-art digital mammography and video telemedicine regardless of the van's proximity to a clinic or hospital. The team can provide pap, pelvic and breast exams, urinalysis, gonorrhea and chlamydia testing, cholesterol, glucose and waive testing, urinalysis and immunization services.
"The island of Hawaii's mammography screening rates are alarmingly well below the national average. Kaiser Permanente's Mobile Health Vehicle will contribute to increasing these rates for our members, and by providing free mammograms to community health center-qualified uninsured women," said Daryl Kurozawa, MD, Kaiser Permanente Hawaii. "We will be partnering with community organizations to refer women for mammograms, and will make it available at employer sites to provide screenings and other health services for our members."
Kaiser Permanente's efforts take wellness initiatives beyond the doctor's office to build healthier communities - and to provide Kaiser Permanente members and the uninsured with connectivity, ease and convenience to access health care wherever they are.
About Kaiser Permanente
Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health care. We are recognized as one of America's leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans. Founded in 1945, our mission is to provide high-quality, affordable health care services to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently serve 8.6 million members in nine states and the District of Columbia. Care for members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by their personal physicians, specialists and team of caregivers. Our expert and caring medical teams are empowered and supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the art care delivery and world-class chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education and the support of community health. For more information, go to: www.kp.org/newscenter.