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Hawaii, the only U.S. state composed entirely of islands, covers 6,423 square miles, with a 2017 estimated population of 1,427,538 people – 272,540 living in rural Hawaii (USDA-ERS). Honolulu, the capital, is located on the island of Oahu. The state’s largest cities are Honolulu, Pearl City, Hilo, and Kailua. According to 2017 data from the U.S. Census Bureau, 25.7% of the state’s population is white, 2.2% is African-American, 37.8% is Asian, 0.4% is American Indian or Alaska Native, 10.2% is Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, and 10.5% is of Hispanic or Latino origin.

Hawaii Rural Healthcare Facilities

Hawaii Rural Healthcare Facilities map

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There are 23 hospitals in Hawaii (Kaiser, 2016). The state has 9 hospitals identified as Critical Access Hospitals (Flex Team, 7/2018). There are 2 Rural Health Clinics in Hawaii (CMS, 2017), and 14 Federally Qualified Health Centers provide services at 71 sites in the state (NACHC, 2017).

Selected Social Determinants of Health for Rural Hawaii

Although most Hawaiians have some form of health insurance coverage, 5% of residents remain uninsured (Kaiser, 2016). According to the Economic Research Service, the average per capita income in 2016 was $50,363, while rural per capita income lagged at $39,775. The ERS reports, based on 2016 ACS data, that the poverty rate in rural Hawaii is 12.9%, compared with 8.5% in urban areas of the state. 8.3% of the rural population has not completed high school, while 8.8% of the urban population lacks a high school diploma according to 2012-2016 ACS data reported by ERS. The unemployment rate in rural Hawaii is 2.7%, while in urban Hawaii it is 2.3% (USDA-ERS, 2017).

For a national comparison, please see an overview of the United States.

Data Sources
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services: Rural Health Clinic List; Flex Monitoring Team: Critical Access Hospital List; Kaiser Family Foundation State Health Facts; National Association of Community Health Centers: Key Health Center Data By State; U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts; USDA Economic Research Service: State Fact Sheets


Hawaii State Office of Primary Care and Rural Health
Phone: 808.586.4122
Coordinates federal, state, and local efforts aimed at improving the health of Hawaii’s rural and medically underserved populations.
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There are more organizations related to Hawaii in the organizations section.

Last Reviewed: 9/12/2016