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Maui Memorial Medical Center's Guardian Angel Program Recognizes Exceptional Care

Foundation news | Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Wailuku, Maui, HI (December 15, 2021) – Outstanding caregivers at Maui Memorial Medical Center (MMMC) were honored as Guardian Angels last month. Because of COVID restrictions, honorees were recognized in their departments in an intimate ceremony personally hosted by Maui Health’s senior leader team in partnership with Maui Health Foundation. Surrounded by their colleagues, Maui Health CEO Mike Rembis and other leaders shared their gratitude for each Guardian Angel, presented them with special gifts, and shared nomination letters from patients expressing their utmost gratitude for the exceptional care they received.

“In light of the incredible demands that the pandemic has imposed upon our caregivers, it was of utmost importance for us to recognize our Guardian Angels in a way that truly honored their unbelievable sacrifices and service to their patients and our community,” said Melinda Sweany, Maui Health Chief Development Officer.

Patients who made a donation to Maui Health Foundation in honor of their Guardian Angel were also recognized by MMMC leaders during each recognition ceremony.

"We are so proud of all of our caregivers. Each and every one of them works hard every day and the last year has been especially challenging for all of our staff,” said Mike Rembis, Maui Health CEO. “To have our patients take the time to acknowledge the caregiver who went the extra mile or brought them comfort is heartwarming. We are grateful to be able to recognize both our caregivers and our patients through the Guardian Angel program.”

In 2021, there were 32 employees and departments who received this special recognition from patients who contacted Maui Health Foundation to share their stories.

One patient wrote, "I will never forget the kindness and wonderful personal care you gave my husband when he had to be brought in by emergency to your facility and stayed a few days. It was comforting. The staff and doctor were awesome. Thank you!"

Throughout the year, patients can nominate any Maui Health employee who has touched their heart in any way. Guardian Angels can be a doctor, nurse, or any clinical or non-clinical employee from housekeeping or admitting to security or administrative departments.

The Guardian Angel program was established several years ago and has since grown to provide even greater recognition to these caregivers who are honored by their patients, thanks to a generous donation from Goodfellow Bros., who have pledged to sponsor this recognition program for the next five years.

Each caregiver nominated is acknowledged within the same month that they are nominated by their patient. Maui Health senior leadership visits the honoree to personally present them with a Guardian Angel certificate and pin. They also receive special Guardian Angel treats from Maui Sugar Mamas, a local company owned and operated by two Maui residents who also work in the healthcare field. In addition, they receive a Guardian Angel poster to display in their unit.

Patients whose hearts were touched by their caregiver or caregivers are encouraged to nominate that individual or department by visiting

Press photo(s) attached: (high-res images available upon request)

  1. Maui Health leadership honors Guardian Angel Olivia Bautista. (L to R) Mike Rembis, CEO; Julie LaCroix, Senior Director Care Management; Olivia Bautista, Patient Care Coordinator; Marian Horikawa-Barth, Chief Nurse Executive; and Melinda Sweany, Chief Development Officer.

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About Maui Health Foundation
Maui Health Foundation is dedicated to the philanthropic support of the Maui Health hospitals. Our Foundation works hand in hand with Maui Health to be a lifeline for our patients by supporting patient care, advancing programs and technology, and creating healing environments for all who walk through our doors. Your donations support the health of our islands’ communities as well as Maui Health employees and can include gifts of cash, property or securities, corporate grants, bequests, and employer matching contributions. For more information visit

About Maui Health
Maui Health, aka Maui Health System, community hospitals and associated clinics affiliated with Kaiser Permanente, includes Maui Memorial Medical Center, Kula Hospital, Lanai Community Hospital and associated clinics, and serves the people of Maui and Lanai. The facilities under Maui Health employ nearly 1700 Maui County residents, partner with over 450 hospital-based physicians, clinicians, and community-based primary and specialty physicians, and are open to all patients regardless of health insurance coverage. Maui Health is committed to delivering high quality, affordable, patient-centered health care and improving the health of the community. Maui Health is supported by Kaiser Permanente’s industry-leading technology systems, evidence-based medicine and nationally recognized care quality. For more information, visit