Senior Care Leaders

September, 2014

The retirement options of today may be drastically different than what you may have imagined in the past. Modern k−upuna care leans heavily on lifestyle—allowing retirees to choose among diverse accommodations (from communities that feel just like home to those that feel like resort getaways) and varying degrees of medical attention (from full independence to full-time health care).

The very best thing you can do? Start your research early. Those who plan for their elder years—instead of waiting for a physical emergency to mandate rushed decisions—tend to have great experiences. In the following pages, learn about the organizations that are leading the way in Hawai’i for happy retirements.



Darlene Canto
Director of Marketing at Kahala Nui

Retirement is ranked as a major life event.  When work stops and retirement begins, a significant life change occurs.  Your perception of who you are and your sense of worth in society changes…as does your lifestyle.  Regardless of whether retirement happened by choice or through downsizing or ill health, life will be different.  Many retirees find themselves feeling disconnected and under-appreciated especially if they held positions involving a high level of responsibility.  Employment perks are gone, relationships with colleagues are lost, time has to be managed differently, and spousal relationships change.  I checked in with a few retirees to see what they’ve done to retire successfully.

What are best practices to respond to life changes that come with retirement?
People can draw on skills and strategies developed through adulthood; skills such as problem-solving, keeping a positive attitude, reaching out to family and friends for support, accepting change, and looking towards the future as an opportunity.

How does one plan for a positive retirement?
Some people find that goal-setting, short and long term, provides meaning and structure.  For example, retiree Anne vowed to improve swimming by learning to breathe properly and strengthening various strokes.  Weeks of lessons and practice paid off.  Anne is a stellar swimmer and her accomplishment boosted her confidence.

What advice can you give others to retire with a sense of purpose?
There are countless opportunities:  Develop new skills, move into a different type of work, start a new business, return to school, pursue a challenging hobby, to name a few.  This would be a great time to live the dream, face new experiences, take some risks.  Retirement is a change agent – it creates opportunities for new beginnings.
Make your retirement extraordinary.  Try new things.  Don’t let technology pass you by.  Keep the mind active, keep learning.  Read, read, read!  Travel.  Explore new environments.  Keep moving.  Celebrate something every week.  Smile often.  Be grateful.

The Plaza Assisted Living


Tricia Medeiros
Regional Director, The Plaza

When might assisted living be appropriate?
Essentially, once you start needing a little extra help with everyday activities or tasks like medication management or bathing, assisted living can be a very helpful option.

What makes life at The Plaza Assisted Living unique?
It feels like home. It’s an apartment complex, with convenient month-to-month rental, but it’s also a thriving community of seniors, complete with access to nursing staff, who are available to assist with questions or problems. Having that extra help does make you worry less and remain more independent.

How many Plaza Assisted Living communities are currently in operation?
Currently, there are three Plaza locations in operation – at Punchbowl, Mililani, and Moanalua with a fourth community, The
Plaza at Pearl City, scheduled to open in October 2014.

Will The Plaza at Pearl City offer the same levels of service as the other Plaza communities?
Yes. The Plaza at Pearl City will offer the same care programs that have made The Plaza a preferred choice for Hawaii’s seniors, including independent and assisted living, memory care, and short-term respite care.

Jenkins Eye Care

State-of-the-Art Eye Health for Every Age


Dr. Tyrie Lee Jenkins
Ophthalmologist, Jenkins Eye Care

Is your vision aging you?
The population is aging. 10,000 people turn 65 every day and will for the next 19 years. Baby boomers are driving the health care industry to provide up-to-date care. Cataract surgery techniques and advanced intraocular lenses give patients the option to be glasses free.

How often should I have an eye exam?
Routine eye care is essential. Seeing an eye care professional yearly for a dilated exam is recommended if you are over 65.  As you age there is a higher chance of cataract, macular degeneration and glaucoma.   Early detection of these conditions is key to preventing vision loss.

Why Jenkins Eye Care?
Dr. Tyrie Jenkins has devoted her career to providing cutting-edge technology to the people of Hawaii in an ‘ohana setting.  She brought LASIK surgery to Hawaii in 1997 and performed the first laser assisted cataract surgery in January 2012 using LenSx® technology.  Most recently, Jenkins Eye Care along with Surgical Suites is introducing VERION™ Image-Guided cataract surgery.  Using high-definition imaging of the eye, this technology will provide increased precision and improved outcomes for cataract surgery patients.   That means more patients with 20/20 vision without glasses!

Pohai Nani


Patricia Camero
Executive Director, Pohai Nani

What kind of advice would you give someone looking into a retirement community?
Look for more than just maintenance free living and fancy amenities.  Look for a place where there is a sense of `ohana.  At the end of the day, there is a difference between finding a place you can stay and finding a place you never want to leave.

Besides delivering the best service possible, the community that you select must be one with whom you feel secure and comfortable.  It’s just as important to be able to trust the organization behind the employees.  They should not be there to persuade you, but to offer you understanding.

Although you will never replace your house, you truly can find a sense of belonging someplace else.  Feeling at home means feeling comfortable, relaxed and at ease.  Home is a place where you feel respected, valued, satisfied and free to be yourself.  At Pohai Nani, your home doesn’t ever feel like a business or a system.  It’s truly a place that you can make your own.

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