< < Back to Company Profiles page

Share | |

2013 Senior Living & Health Care

Compassionate services and insight by Hawaii’s premier senior care professionals and organizations.

(page 2 of 3)

Residential Needs and Health

Darlene Canto
Director of Marketing, Kāhala Nui

Kāhala Nui

Caring for our kūpuna is a time-honored tradition that is etched in Hawaii’s culture. Kāhala Nui who has been home to more than 360 seniors since 2005 strives to preserve that tradition and sense of community. This gracious community in the heart of Kāhala fosters the island spirit of ‘ohana and provides an outstanding Life Care plan with standout amenities. The program includes lifelong residency, estate preservation (with a 90 percent refundable resident deposit that is returned to the resident›s estate or family), priority access to assisted living and comprehensive nursing, and quality health care at a significant discount.

“We’re all about wellness,” says Darlene Canto, director of marketing and community outreach. “Kāhala Nui offers such diverse lifestyle programs, keeping residents actively involved on campus. At the heart of it all is an opportunity to live with intention.” That outlook is engendered in everything the community does, from yoga to hula in independent living --- Fusion and Stretch & Coordination to water color instruction in the Hi‘olani Care Center.

Canto says seniors are exploring retirement options at a much younger age.  This is especially a good thing for those considering retirement as the community has a robust wait list. “The better educated you are about your options, the better able you are to plan for the kind of retirement that you truly want.” maintains Canto. “Young seniors can begin planning even before retirement to ensure that their lifestyle goals will be met.”

For these reasons and more, Kāhala Nui is Hawaii›s number one choice for kūpuna care. For more information please see www.KahalaNui.com.


Suzanne Antounian
Manager, Holiday Retirement

Holiday Retirement

We are all about the lifestyle,” explains Suzanne Antounian, manager for the Kalama Heights retirement community, “Our philosophy is that our residents should be able to age in a place that feels just the same as their home. We just happen to add a lot of fun and aloha to retirement.”

Celebrating 13 years in operation, Kalama Heights is situated on the south side of Maui in Kihei, an area that boasts some of the best weather in Hawaii. Aside from a full deck of luxuries—like a beautiful heated swimming pool, jacuzzi, library, billiard room, and much more—the community keeps a full agenda of activities ranging from aerobics to movie nights. New this fall, Kalama Heights is announcing a partnership with Venture Physical Therapy which will provide a full gym and strength training programs for adults over the age of 55.

Residents come from all over the islands and the mainland to stay at Kalama Heights—a subsidiary of Holiday Retirement—which means that retirees can stay at any of the other 300 locations while traveling. There are 120 apartments and essentials like transportation and housekeeping are included in all plans. “We encourage our future residents to consider looking into their retirement community options early, before something drastic, health-wise, happens so that they can enjoy the amenities to their  fullest,” advises Antounian, “For the lifestyle you receive here, we’re second to none.”

Convenience without long-term committment

Rick Skelton
The Plaza Assisted Living

The Plaza Assisted Living

When a company manages to grow, despite the incredible challenges posed by the downturn of the economy, you know they must be doing something right. Such is the case for The Plaza Assisted Living, which has started construction in Pearl City, with projects on the horizon in Waikiki and the windward side, in addition to its three existing locations.

“We have worked diligently to manage increasing costs and to continue to provide an affordable rental to our residents and their families,” says Tricia Medeiros, Regional Director for The Plaza Assisted Living. “As a company, we have had the rare opportunity to grow and expand, and we are blessed and very grateful for this opportunity.”

The secret to the company’s success lies in its people. In fact, the company came about from principal owners who were caring for their aging parents. They have developed a deep understanding of the senior population in Hawaii and designed their residences and services accordingly.

“We have found that our residents want to live in the same neighborhoods that they have been living in or in areas that their children are living in,” says Rick Skelton, one of the company’s principal owners and President of Sound Health Hawaii. “We look for areas that moderate-income seniors are living in and attempt to build in their neighborhoods.”

As a convenient month-to-month rental, seniors have an opportunity to decide whether the communities fit their needs, without long-term commitments.

“The Plaza does not require a large buy-in or entrance fee. Residents pay a monthly fee, and they can leave at any time with a 30-day notice,” Medeiros says. “The Plaza communities also offer respite services or short-term stays.”

The idea is to offer a community in which residents can maintain their independence, with options to take advantage of accessible services at the same time.

“On-site, The Plaza offers or arranges for an array of services for our residents,” says Medeiros. “These include physical therapy, occupational therapy, sensory therapy, physician services, podiatry, pharmacy services, lab services, massages, support groups, and even a hair salon.”

The Plaza also offers 24-hour nursing staff and support. For needs off-site, The Plaza provides transportation to medical appointments and offers an escort or caregiver should a resident need someone to accompany them.

“We strive to give residents choices and a variety of options,” Skelton says. “The setting is homelike and inviting to seniors and their families.”

Nursing Services

Kathy Newkirk Leong
CEO Kahu Mālama Nurses, Inc.

Kahu Mālama Nurses, Inc.

First and always a nurse, I know that everything we do in our office, from hiring our caregivers to matching them to our clients, will make a difference in the care a patient receives,” says Kathy Newkirk Leong, founding officer of Na Kahu Malama Nurses, Inc., commonly known as Kahu Malama.

Kahu Malama wasn’t the first temporary agency to place nurses and healthcare workers, but in 1982, it was the first to place healthcare workers with a registered nurse at the helm. Most temporary employment agencies place laborers or office workers.

Today, Kahu Malama is the only healthcare staffing service to achieve the gold seal of approval from the Joint Commission, a national accreditation and certification agency for healthcare facilities. In order to become certified, Kahu Malama underwent a voluntary on-site review in 2009 to determine compliance with national standards. Compliance with national standards assures that rigorous business practices are in place and followed. Certification demonstrates that Kahu Malama is committed to continuously monitoring and improving its business practices.  

Kahu Malama Nurses provides nurses and healthcare workers to: private patients in homes or hospitals; community health clinics, where they administer flu shots and other immunizations; and hospitals, long-term care facilities, clinics and medical offices, where they supplement regular full-time staff who may be absent or on leave.   

Every worker employed by Kahu Malama is carefully screened, personally interviewed and has passed nationally validated testing for their discipline and specialty. Once they complete that process, they are required to submit to drug testing and background checks. Kahu Malama takes full responsibility for the personnel it places with its clients. The company processes payroll and is responsible for payment of all State and Federal payroll taxes and legally required withholdings. The company provides a full employee benefit package, and maintains extensive professional and general liability insurance coverage.

“We want our clients to be completely assured that when they use a nurse, nursing or medical assistant, home health aide or any healthcare worker from Kahu Malama Nurses, that person has met our very high standards for experience and professionalism in patient care,” says Newkirk Leong.  

“Nursing is our only business,” she says. “Even our name says it all. ‘Kahu Malama: a professional attendant or nurse, kahu, who cares, malama.’ We care for Hawaii.”

Eye Care

Dr. Tyrie Jenkins
Jenkins Eye Care

Dr. Tyrie Jenkins

Eye care is one of those things easily taken for granted—that is, until vision begins to wane. While eye disease is most concentrated in older populations, it’s important to understand that every ailment affecting the body at any age manifests itself in the eye. That’s why ophthalmologists can often call attention to unrelated and sometimes asymptomatic conditions such as diabetes, thyroid disease, hypertension and elevated cholesterol in patients.

Older adults should be aware of increased risk for dry eye, cataracts, glaucoma, macular degeneration and other disabling eye conditions. Fortunately, Dr. Tyrie Lee Jenkins has been pioneering the way forward in Hawai‘i ophthalmology since 1997 when she performed the first LASIK surgery in the state. Since then she’s been busy introducing advanced technologies and eye care options to her patients. Dr. Jenkins was the first ophthalmologist in Hawai‘i to use LenSx® technology to perform bladeless laser cataract surgery.  

“Everybody over the age of 65 should get a yearly exam to monitor any developments in glaucoma, macular degeneration, and cataracts,” Dr. Jenkins advises. “There are wonderful treatments available, including LASIK. Many of my patients are surprised to hear that it’s only a 15 minute surgery and three hour total process with an almost perfect success rate.”

Always on the forefront of advances in eye care, Dr. Jenkins and her team at Jenkins Eye Care offer patients a wide variety of eye care options, ranging from the most cutting-edge LASIK technologies to technologies like iStent®, which reduces eye pressure for patients with both cataracts and glaucoma, and Optiplus Technology which assesses real time quality of vision during cataract surgery—allowing for more effective surgical decisions.   

Most importantly, all of this state-of-the-art technology is housed in an ‘ohana environment where patients experience compassionate care from a highly successful team.

I feel lucky to be able to take care of my older patients,” says Jenkins. “One of my favorite things is sitting down to talk and learn from their valuable life experiences and insight.”

Pharmacy Convenience

Pharmacare Hawaii co-founders:
Byron Yoshino and Rick Sakurada

Pharmacare Hawaii

When it comes to medication, proper administration and prescription compliance are key. Lucky for Hawaii seniors, Pharmacare Hawaii recognizes their unique characteristics and has taken steps to ensure their senior clients are doing things right to maintain good health. The company provides not only medications, but also specializes in at-home services. For seniors, this is especially beneficial.

“We have on staff a consultant pharmacist who offers services to various nursing facilities,” says Byron Yoshino, Pharm D, president and CEO of Pharmacare Hawaii. “In addition, our community pharmacy locations offer synchronization of refills so they can all be available on the same day each month. We also offer our patients reminders for their refills and delivery of their refills.”

The company’s free delivery, 24-hour phone line and skilled employees help to provide the kind of security Hawaii’s seniors have come to depend on for their health care. And while Pharmacare Hawaii has earned a stellar reputation across the state since its inception in 1983, it has no plans of stopping now. “We are preparing our company by anticipating the needs of the senior population,” Yoshino says. “We are evolving from a pharmacy that dispenses medication to providing health care that improves the quality of life for our customers … We want them to be as healthy and happy as can be.”


Scott A. Makuakane
Counselor at Law, Est8Planning Counsel LLLC

Est8Planning Counsel

According to Scott Makuakane, 1983 UH Law grad and senior attorney in the law firm of Est8Planning Counsel LLLC, the best moves people can make when it comes to their estate plans fall into three categories: making a plan, implementing the plan, and regularly updating the plan.

“Making a plan requires focusing on some unpleasant possibilities, but having a plan will make things much easier on you and your family as inevitable things happen,” Makuakane says. “And a plan doesn’t implement itself.  There are things you have to do in order to make the plan work, like transfer bank accounts, change title to real estate, and change beneficiary designations.”

As time goes by, Makuakane feels strongly that every plan must be updated. He says that “there are so many things that we have little or no control over, and any change in them can make a huge difference. Things like our health, our family situations, the list of people we trust to make decisions for us and our loved ones, the tax and other laws that impact our estate plans.” Makuakane recommends an annual review to provide the peace of mind of knowing that your estate plan will work as intended.

Community Living

Patricia “Tish” Camero
Executive Director, Good Samaritan Society Pohai Nani

Pohai Nani

Pohai Nani’s resort-like retirement community is located on sixteen lush acres in a highly desirable residential area on the windward side of the island in Kaneohe; just minutes away from Honolulu and a world away from the hectic pace of Waikiki. In fact, some of our residents say, “It’s like living in paradise.”

Choosing to call Pohai Nani home gives you the freedom and affordability to live life fully within a community that respects your individuality and welcomes your friendship. We are sure you’ll find our tropical setting will continually refresh your mind, body and spirit.

Our community provides a level of service for every need. From senior independent living cottages and apartment homes to assisted living and 24-hour skilled nursing and rehabilitation, we can provide the services to accommodate your unique needs without having to leave the property. We offer a wealth of amenities and services, including our well-known fitness program.

Pohai Nani’s Wellness Program offers a myriad of specialized classes and activities, and an innovative approach to comprehensive fitness. The goal of our fitness program is to develop and provide programs that enhance health and fitness, increase physical activity and socialization opportunities. The activities and exercise classes are designed to increase strength, flexibility, endurance and balance.

Our location is only 20 minutes away from the heart of Hawaii’s cultural and art scene, world-class shopping, world-renowned cuisine, music, fine arts and theater. Close by, you’ll find golf courses, boating facilities and medical services. Whatever your passion, Pohai Nani’s vibrant environment offers you an experience and setting unlike any other retirement community on the island.

Pohai Nani is located high on a hill and offers sweeping views of the sparkling blue Pacific Ocean and the Koolau Mountains that gracefully frame the edges of Kaneohe Bay. The warm ocean waters, the natural backdrop of the lush Koolau Mountains, and the profusion of exotic flowers and fruit blend to create a beautiful setting we call home.

Hawaii Business magazine invites you to comment on our articles and the issues they raise. Comments are moderated for offensive language, commercial messages and off-topic posts and may be deleted. Some comments may be chosen for inclusion in the magazine on the Feedback page.

Add your comment: