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Islands Hospice serves our patients, our families, and our community with a total commitment to excellence in hospice care.

Maui Corner: Kehau Watari

Posted on March 25, 2021

Maui Corner

Meet Kehau – a brand new member of the Islands Hospice Maui Team.
Tell us about yourself!
I go by the name Kehau. I was born and raised right here on Maui. I am the oldest of four children and the only girl. I am a mother of two beautiful children – a girl named Shaylee (10) and a boy named ‘Aukai (11 months). I’ve been working in the medical field since I was 19, starting as a health unit clerk at our only acute hospital on Maui, Maui Memorial Medical Center. Working there, I always encountered nursing students and their instructors, and one of the instructors, Anne Sharnhorst, would always tell me, “You need to go to nursing school. What are you waiting for?” I never thought of going to college because I didn’t believe I was smart enough. However, a few months later, I found out I was pregnant, and I needed to get my life together because I did not want to bring my daughter into this world and have her grow up the way I did. From then on, I started on my nursing journey. I graduated from the nursing program at UH Maui College with my ADN, worked on Oahu, came back home to Maui, worked as an LTC nurse for the last five years, and then came here to Islands Hospice to further enhance my nursing knowledge and experience.

How long have you worked at Islands Hospice?
Three weeks.

What do you do at Islands Hospice? Describe your role.
I assist Malia, our DCS, with everyday tasks such as creating new patient charts, preparing for IDT, ordering medical supplies, answering phones, interviewing CNAs, assisting with audits, and working on nurse and CNA schedules. I recently decided to organize the binders for our skilled nurses and new nurses. The binders are now filled with important information relating to their everyday tasks and include forms they need to fill out for deaths, discharges, admissions, and medications.

Describe a typical workday.
I’m an early bird, so my day usually starts at 7:30 a.m. I start off by sanitizing the office and then log into my e-mails and our software system to prepare for the day. I get a head start on clearing e-mails to lessen the workload of my DCS. I also offer my assistance to my coworkers in the office. Once I’m well versed in my role, I expect to hit the field and help the other nurses where I can.

Have you held any other positions here? If so, please list them.
I was a LTC nurse at Kahului Makua for five years and before that, I worked at the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam as a home health nurse for a very lovely family.

What is your favorite part about working at Islands Hospice?
That I am part of a team that helps the transitioning residents of my island, Maui, my community. Making this part of our patients’ lives comfortable and stress-free so that their end of life is of quality and spent with the people they love the most.

Do you have any special memories from your time working here?
Since being here for three weeks, I have not been able to make such fond memories yet, but I look forward to making some in the future.

Is there anything about your background that inspired you to work at Islands Hospice/in hospice care?
Being a LTC nurse, I worked with many residents who unfortunately did not have the support that Hospice offers to the resident and their families. Additionally, the word hospice tends to scare many families, and I wanted to help change that with education and support my community in any way that I can.

What do you like to do in your spare time?
I love the ocean, so any time I can get there, I take my children. My passion is being a mother and a nurse. I don’t see myself succeeding in any other areas as much as I do being a mother and nurse.

Is there anything else you want to share with your fellow colleagues?
I look forward to working with all my colleagues and can’t wait to see what my future here at Islands Hospice has in store for me.