Though medicine has seen many changes since the hospital was founded,
Castle Medical Center has never lost sight of the human side of health
care. Today, Castle’s commitment to providing innovative health
care is still coupled with concern for each patient’s physical,
emotional, and spiritual well-being.
Since Castle first opened its doors in 1963, the hospital’s
primary mission has been to meet the needs of the community. Fifty
years ago, Windward residents welcomed their new hospital with sighs of
relief. Finally, care was available close to home.
For years, Windward residents had contended with part-time ambulance
service and unpredictable trips over the old Pali Road. In an
emergency—when immediate medical care was
critical—residents prayed that rockslides and sudden downpours
wouldn’t slow their journey.
A small community group, long aware of these problems, launched a
campaign in 1953 to establish a hospital in Windward O‘ahu. The
late Robert Chung, M.D., and Ms. Carolyn Rankin were the hospital’s
major proponents, and numerous fundraisers built financial and
community support for the project.
The campaign continued to gain momentum. A series of articles in
The Honolulu Advertiser documented the seven-year struggle for a Windward
hospital. Castle Ranch donated ten acres of land as a site for the
facility. The Seventh-day Adventist Church offered $600,000 towards
construction, and $170,000 was raised through community contributions.
Though the Governor’s Hospital Advisory Council and the 30th
Territorial Legislature backed the project, the state Board of Health
refused to designate Windward O‘ahu as a separate hospital zone.
As a result, federal funds for construction were stalled.
Not long after, two separate incidents further emphasized the need for
a community hospital. Five men were injured when a roof collapsed at
the nearly completed Cornet Store in Kailua. The next month, a
two-year-old Kailua girl choked to death on a pill. Doctors in Honolulu
felt her life might have been saved if a hospital operating room had
been close to home.
The following month, the state Board of Health approved the proposed
hospital, and federal funds were made available.
The $2 million facility opened January 16, 1963, a little more than
a year after ground was broken. Castle Memorial Hospital, named after
Harold K.L. Castle who donated the land, opened with
72 beds and 14 bassinets. In 1983, the hospital changed its name to
Castle Medical Center to reflect the growth into outpatient services and
Castle Medical Center is now a 160-bed facility with
more than 1,000 employees. On the medical staff are 300 physicians
in a wide range of specialties and subspecialties. In the twelve months ending September 2013,
Castle provided care for more than 7,500 inpatients, over 74,000
outpatients, and more than 33,000 emergency patients.
Castle Medical Center, a non-profit institution, serves all of
O‘ahu and is the primary health care facility for Windward
O‘ahu. The hospital is owned and operated by
a Seventh-day Adventist health care system.
(Health care and wellness have been a focus of the Seventh-day Adventist Church from its very
founding in the 1800s, and in April of 2010, PBS television stations nationwide
aired a documentary titled “The Adventists” that examines this subject. Please
click here to read more about the documentary.)
Castle is a full-service medical center offering a wide range of
inpatient, outpatient, and home-based services. See the
Medical Services section of this Web
site for descriptions of Castle’s services.
Many of Castle’s most successful programs are focused on preventive
medicine and the promotion of healthy life habits. Castle’s
Wellness and Lifestyle Medicine Center, our
Rehabilitation Services in Kailua and Kāne‘ohe,
the employee wellness program, and Castle’s vegetarian cafeteria,
The Bistro, all support this mission.
In addition, Castle Medical Center offers a team approach to
weight loss surgery with
The Hawai‘i Center for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery.
In this center’s programs, patients work closely not only with a surgeon,
but with an entire team of dedicated weight loss professionals.
A recent major physical project to be completed at Castle has been the total renovation of our
Birth Center, now the Vera Zilber Birth Center.
More than 1,100 babies a year are now delivered at Castle, and thanks to a generous
gift from the Joseph and Vera Zilber Foundation, Castle now has a beautiful new
facility in which families can receive the personalized care and enjoy the comfort they
seek when a new member of the family is arriving.
Besides all the medical services available at Castle, a wide range of classes
and programs have been developed to meet the community’s health needs: birthing classes,
infant care classes, vegetarian cooking classes, nutritional counseling,
lifestyle weight management, surgical weight loss seminars, smoking
cessation counseling, and aerobics and exercise classes. Free seminars are also
provided to the public, sometimes with nationally known speakers, on a
variety of topics, such as nutrition, advances in medicine, and spiritual
wellness. Also free are our support groups
on caregiving, Alzheimer’s disease, bereavement, mental illness, Parkinson’s disease,
and smoking cessation.