After 43‐year career serving HMSA members, Chief Executive Officer Michael A. Gold to retire

The Board of Directors of the Hawai‘i Medical Service Association (HMSA) today announced the retirement of Chief Executive Officer Michael A. Gold at the end of the year, and named HMSA President and Chief Operating Officer Michael B. Stollar as president and chief executive officer starting January 1, 2018.

“I’ve had the privilege of working at HMSA for 43 years and making my entire career here,” Gold said. “I came to HMSA in my 20s, after my time in the U.S. Air Force and attending the University of Hawaii. I thought I’d be here only for a short time, but I stayed because of the commitment people at HMSA have for helping others. Throughout my career, I’ve been inspired by the social workers who founded HMSA to help their family, friends, and neighbors. That dedication to serving others will always be the heart of our company and the hallmark of our employees.”

HMSA Board Chair Robert S. Harrison, chairman and CEO of First Hawaiian Bank, noted, “I’m grateful to Mike Gold for his incredible leadership, total dedication to our community’s health, and boldness in moving Hawaii to a new model for health care. Michael Stollar shares the same steadfast commitment to our state, to our members, and to upholding the innovative spirit of HMSA’s founders.”

Gold said, “HMSA will be in great hands with Michael Stollar. He’s served HMSA members for more than 30 years, playing key leadership roles throughout the company. Most importantly, Michael shares the passion that each HMSA employee has for our mission and improving the health of Hawaii. Just as every HMSA leader has done over the past 80 years, Michael will continue to lead the company in innovative responses to the changing needs of our members and our always‐changing health care environment.”

“Leading HMSA is an honor and privilege that comes with profound responsibilities,” said HMSA President and Chief Operating Officer Michael Stollar. “My job is to ensure that we continue working with every stakeholder to build a community system of health that is safe, affordable, accessible, and delivers the kinds of health and well‐being outcomes that Hawaii’s people deserve.”

“We will constantly work to make it easy for people to be meaningfully engaged in their own health. And that the health care delivery system is easy to understand, easy to navigate, and designed for people,” Stollar said.

Gold is recognized as a visionary whose new ideas and practices have improved the health and well‐being of HMSA members and everyone in Hawaii:

  • Creating HMSA’s Online Care, the first telehealth system in the nation offered by a health insurer. Its gives all residents online access to doctors, regardless of their insurance.
  • Introducing Blue Zones Project to Hawaii. Blue Zones is a community-wide initiative to help make the healthy choice the easy choice for everyone in the state. It empowers people and companies to make lasting change so everyone can enjoy longer, happier, and healthier lives.
  • Bringing Dr. Dean Ornish’s program to Hawaii. The program can reverse a patient’s heart disease with a primarily plant‐based diet, exercise, stress management, and group support.
  • Partnering with digital health care leader Sharecare to put all of a person’s health on a single digital platform.
  • Establishing HMSA Centers, state‐of‐the‐art spaces that bring HMSA into communities and closer to members for servicing, sales, and educational programs.
  • Forming strategic partnerships with Hawaii Pacific Health and The Queen’s Health Systems to improve the health of HMSA members and all patients.

Gold and Stollar led one HMSA’s most forward‐looking achievements: payment transformation. They worked with Hawaii doctors and national health care leaders to transform insurance payments, reimbursing doctors for improving their patients’ overall physical, mental, and emotional health. More than 90 percent of eligible primary care doctors have joined payment transformation and HMSA is now working closely with specialists and hospitals to further develop forms of payment aligned with desired outcomes.

All of Gold’s initiatives are based on a fundamental belief that a sustainable health care delivery system for Hawaii can only be achieved with an unwavering dedication to engaging HMSA members and everyone in the state in their own health and well‐being.

He led the company through health care’s technological revolution and the rollout of the historic Affordable Care Act while maintaining one of the lowest administrative costs among health plans in the nation. During Gold’s tenure as CEO, HMSA has grown to more than 732,000 members and was named Hawaii’s top company in 2015 and 2016 by Hawaii Business magazine. HMSA continues to be Hawaii’s market leader and is chosen by more people and employers than any other in the state.

About HMSA

Caring for the people of Hawaii is our promise and our privilege. Working together with employers, partners, and doctors and other health care providers, we promote well‐being; develop reliable, affordable health plans; and support members with clear, thoughtful guidance.

HMSA is the most experienced health plan in the state, covering more than half of Hawaii’s population. As a recognized leader, we embrace our responsibility to strengthen the health and well‐being of our community.

Headquartered on Oahu with centers and offices statewide to serve our members, HMSA is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.