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Cover the Uninsured Week Community Health Fair
The Hawai`i Uninsured Project (HUP) sponsored a free community health fair on Tuesday, May 3, 2005 at Tamarind Park in downtown Honolulu. The event was the highlight for “Cover the Uninsured Week” in Hawaii, part of a national initiative aimed at focusing attention on 45 million Americans who are without health care coverage. Currently in Hawaii, about 113,000 people, or nearly 10 percent of the population, are without health insurance. Research from the University of Hawaii indicates that 75 percent of the state’s uninsured are adults, of which 58 percent are working. About 23 percent are children.

A number of government agencies and community organizations provided free health screenings, risk assessments, consultation and information on living a healthy lifestyle, preventive care, and access to health care. Participating organizations included:

  • AARP
  • Aloha United Way
  • Alzheimer’s Association
  • American Cancer Society
  • American Diabetes Association Hawai`i
  • American Heart Association
  • Department of Human Services
  • Department of Labor & Industrial Relations
  • Hawai`i Primary Care Association
  • Hawai`i Covering Kids
  • Hawai`i Uninsured Project
  • Healthy Hawai`i Initiative, Department of Health
  • Insurance Division, Department of Commerce & Consumer Affairs
  • Ke Ola Mamo
  • Papa Ola Lokahi
  • Sage PLUS Program, Executive Office on Aging

Mr. Henry Oliva, Deputy Director of the Hawaii State Department of Human Services, read and presented HUP with a proclamation by Governor Linda Lingle, which proclaimed May 1-8, 2005 as Cover the Uninsured Week in Hawaii.

Members of the Hawaii Pacific University Cheerleaders entertained the lunch crowd with cheers and stunts. The HPU cheerleaders were the 2005 winners of three national titles at the National Cheerleaders Association Collegiate Championship recently held in Florida.

Now in its third year, “Cover the Uninsured Week” is the largest movement on the issue of the uninsured. It is funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the nation’s largest philanthropy dedicated to improving the health and health care of all Americans. All 50 states participated in similar events, and former Presidents Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter served as co-chairs while Noah Wyle, star of the popular television series, “ER,” served as national spokesperson.