Dr. Brian Lein, assistant director for health care administration for the Defense Health Agency (DHA), and the new Hawaii market director, Col. Martin Doperak, hosted a ceremony at Tripler Army Medical Center on October 20, 2021, ushering in the new Military Health System market.
The Hawaii Market is on the leading edge of the Military Health System’s historic change, following its formal establishment by the DHA on July 26, 2021. By standing up the Hawaii Market, DHA enables greater collaboration across military hospitals and clinics, strengthening the medical readiness of service members and enabling these facilities to deliver the best care and patient experience.
“Safe, reliable patient care is the cornerstone, expectation, and priority for military healthcare in Hawaii,” said Doperak. “Regardless of service affiliation, patients should know they are receiving the highest level of care when they walk into any Army, Navy, or Air Force treatment facility on the island. DHA reinforces and facilitates this promise to our warfighters and their families.”
The Hawaii Market consists of four Military Treatment Facilities (MTFs) to include Tripler Army Medical Center, Naval Health Clinic Hawaii, Desmond T. Doss Health Clinic, and 15th Medical Group. The market serves a population of about 150,000 eligible Military Health System beneficiaries spanning 597 square miles of the third largest Hawaiian island, Oahu.
As part of the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act, the Military Health System is transitioning the administration and management of all military and hospitals and clinics to DHA. To do so effectively, DHA chose a “market approach,” based on the six Enhanced Multi-Service Markets (eMSMs) already in place, one of which is Hawaii. Markets are groups of hospitals and clinics working together in a geographic area operating as a system to support the sharing of patients, staff, functions, budget, and more across all market facilities.
“Healthcare resource integration is not a new concept for us,” explained Doperak. “Army, Navy, and Air Force medical services on island began operating as an eMSM in 2013 to oversee the management of healthcare resources in Hawaii. Through this collaboration we learned to focus efforts on both healthcare delivery and individual services’ readiness missions.”
“The establishment of this market is an acknowledgement of your accomplishments,” said Lein. “The medical leaders, the line (unit) leaders, our community and VA partners are working together to ensure the best quality and outcomes for our patients.”