Since 1983, Bay Clinic, Inc. has served the health care needs of the underserved residents of the Hawai’i County districts of North Hilo, South Hilo, Puna, and Ka’u. Bay Clinic, Inc. is a Federally Qualified Health Center network of eight sites located in the towns of Hilo, Kea’au, Pahoa, and Na’alehu. The Mobile Health Unit provides school-based clinic services to the Department of Education Ka’u-Kea’au-Pahoa Complex Area schools.
In 2018, Bay Clinic provided care for 21,196 patients with 70,138 total encounters. Of our designated East Hawai’i service area population, 21 percent is a Bay Clinic patient. The goal of Bay Clinic’s tobacco cessation program is to make a significant difference in decreasing tobacco consumption among their priority populations, including Native Hawaiians, persons with mental health and/or substance abuse challenges, LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer) communities, low socioeconomic status populations, and pregnant women.
Bay Clinic’s tobacco cessation program strives to be available and visible to East Hawai’i residents by providing outreach services at community events such as health fairs and school events, as well as their Bay Clinic-sponsored National Health Center Week Health Fair. They have developed partnership agreements with Hui Malama Ola Na ‘Oiwi, the Native Hawaiian Health Care System of Hawai’i Island, and Ku Aloha Ola Mau, a substance abuse treatment center, in order to provide one-on-one or group cessation classes, as well as counseling sessions to for individuals needing assistance in quitting tobacco.
As a member of Coalition for a Tobacco-Free Hawai‘i since 2003, Bay Clinic, Inc. together with Hawai’i Public Health Institute, Tobacco-Free Hawai‘i Island, Hawai’i County lawmakers, and many community partners across the island have worked collaboratively to change policies, provide resources, and inspire our community to reduce tobacco use and exposure.