86              
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES             H.R. NO.              
TWENTIETH LEGISLATURE, 1999                                
STATE OF HAWAII                                            
                                                             
________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________


                     HOUSE  RESOLUTION

REQUESTING THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH TO CONVENE A TASK FORCE ON
   THE STATE OF HAWAII'S MENTALLY ILL PERSONS IN ORDER TO
   RECOMMEND WAYS TO ADDRESS THE "GAP POPULATION" WITHIN THE
   MENTALLY ILL COMMUNITY, THE IMMENSE BURDENS ON PUBLIC AND
   PRIVATE ENTITIES THAT ARE CHARGED WITH HELPING THIS
   POPULATION; AND THE INCARCERATED MENTALLY ILL POPULATION.
 


 1       WHEREAS, Hawaii Revised Statutes section 334 requires the
 2   Department of Health to "promote, protect, preserve, care for
 3   and improve the mental health of the people of Hawaii,"; and
 4   
 5       WHEREAS, there are certain gap populations which are going
 6   un-served, i.e., those patients who traditionally had been
 7   provided service within Hawaii State Hospital because of their
 8   clinically complex clinical condition, lack of third party
 9   assistance or lack of financial resources; and
10   
11       WHEREAS, the Legislature understands that actions on the
12   part of the Department of Justice and other entities restrain
13   or constrain the Department of Health from admitting more
14   people to Hawaii State Hospital; and
15   
16       WHEREAS, there are growing reports of substantial increases
17   in the homeless population in Hawaii; and
18   
19       WHEREAS, there are increasing numbers of the incarcerated
20   mentally ill people and reports of the inability to transfer
21   out of correctional institutions inmates who clearly need
22   mental health evaluation and or treatment and therefore they
23   are being criminalized within correctional facilities; and
24   
25       WHEREAS, general hospitals in the state of Hawaii such as
26   Queens and Castle are forced to hold individuals who are
27   clinically inappropriate within these facilities are losing
28   anywhere from half a million to a million and a half dollars in
29   one year by attempting to deal with these patients; and
30   
31       WHEREAS, care homes and nursing facilities are being forced
32   to accommodate patients they are not fully equipped to handle
33   and are attempting to provide care to mentally ill residents
34   who need more services which are not available; and
35   
36       WHEREAS, there is a short term hospitalization fund budget
37   within the Department of Health budget that is inadequately

 
Page 2                                   86                
                                  H.R. NO.              
                                                        
                                                        

 
 1   funded to support general hospitals in providing care to this
 2   population; now, therefore
 3   
 4       BE IT RESOLVED by the House of Representatives of the
 5   Twentieth Legislature of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session 
 6   of 1999, that the Department of Health is requested to convene
 7   a task force on the state of Hawaii's mentally ill population
 8   and to recommend ways to address the issues surrounding such
 9   persons; and
10   
11       BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the task force shall include
12   the State Director of Health, or a designated representative, a
13   representative from Castle Medical Center, the Queens Medical
14   Center, United Self-Help, Health Care Association of Hawaii,
15   the Oahu Council on Mental Health, Mental Health Association in
16   Hawaii, Mental Help Hawaii, a representative of community care
17   homes who have had or currently have mentally ill residents, a
18   representative of consumer groups; and
19   
20       BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the task force if requested to
21   review, evaluate and recommend solutions and remedies for the
22   issues surrounding Hawaii's mentally ill persons which include
23   but are not exclusive of "gap populations" within the mentally
24   ill community and ways to serve these persons, the difficulty
25   of admitting more people to Hawaii State Hospital, increases in
26   Hawaii's homeless population and how this relates to the
27   aforementioned "gap population," incarcerated mentally ill
28   persons, the substantial burden on private hospitals when they
29   are forced to treat mentally ill patients and receive little or
30   no compensation, care home and nursing facilities which are not
31   equipped to deal with certain mentally ill patients, the
32   inadequately funded "short-term hospitalization fund,"; and
33   
34       BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that all other departments,
35   agencies, and office of the State and any private companies or
36   agencies receiving state funds are requested to cooperate with
37   and provide assistance to the task force with respect to its
38   study; and
39   
40       BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the task force is requested to
41   report its findings and recommendations, including any proposed
42   implementing legislation, to the Legislature no later than
43   twenty days before the convening of the regular session of
44   2000; and
45   
46       BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this
47   resolution be transmitted to the governor, the president of the

 
Page 3                                   86                
                                  H.R. NO.              
                                                        
                                                        

 
 1   Senate, the speaker of the House of Representatives, and the
 2   department of health.
 3 
 4 
 5 
 6                         OFFERED BY:  ____________________________