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TV special traces hospital's 150 years


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POSTED: Tuesday, July 28, 2009

An alarming death rate among Hawaiians led Queen Emma and King Kamehameha IV to solicit funds and open the first hospital in the Pacific 150 years ago.

The story of “;The Queen's Medical Center: 150 Years of Moments”; will be told by Emme Tomimbang in a one-hour telecast at 9 p.m. Thursday on KHON/Fox, rebroadcast at 4 p.m. Saturday.

Lynne Waters was co-writer and co-producer of the special, presented by Hawaiian Electric Co. and Hawaiian Airlines.

The program presents photographs and video footage about Queen Emma and King Kamehameha IV, who met at Royal School, married in 1856 and established Queen's Hospital to care for the native Hawaiian people.

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The native population had dropped to fewer than 70,000 from more than 350,000 in about 75 years because of vitamin deficiencies, smallpox and other common diseases, according to highlights from the program.

The show will include stories of people who are part of the Queen's ohana—both present and former patients and staff members—and medical “;firsts,”; including the first blood test, X-ray and school of nurses.

A look at the hospital's vision for the next 150 years will include a visit to the research department, discussions with upcoming young Hawaiian physicians and melding of Hawaiian healing with state-of-the-art Western medicine.