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CEO Message

Howard Lee
President & CEO

Weight Watchers

Most people who know me would probably be surprised that I signed up for Weight Watchers. They’d say, “You don’t need to lose weight.” Looking back at September of this year, my weight was getting out of control as my eating habits started to deteriorate. It was at that point when I decided to make a change, I knew postponing my decision would only make losing the weight more difficult. Perhaps it was the convincing Weight Watchers Reimagined commercial that got me interested, I don’t quite remember, but I decided to give it a try. I started off with the basic program, costing about $10 per month (UHA covers Weight Watchers up to $200 after completion of the program).
There were a few things I took away from this experience. The Weight Watchers program is not a fad diet, but rather a lifestyle change that encourages creating better habits around nutrition, sleep, hydration, and exercise. I learned that having a credible source of knowledge coming from a certified nutritionist can be very beneficial to weight loss. In the past I’ve had results with fasting, but in the long run I found it was not sustainable for me. I also learned that I shouldn’t label foods as “good” or “bad”, not to deprive myself of things I enjoyed, and to trust that this mindset needs to be a long-term solution. Jumping on a fad diet may get you results initially, but it may not last you long term. Having a strong foundation in place that’s sustainable will help you to make lasting change.
I found the Weight Watchers app helpful in keeping track of what I eat. I tell people the app is like a bank checking account. It puts you on a weekly and daily point system, and you make decisions on how much you want to withdraw depending on the food choices you make. Some food groups are more expensive, while others cost nothing (you guessed it, the vegetables are free). But like finances, you have to learn to live within your budget.
So, if you are looking to improve your health and stay accountable, I highly recommend you give Weight Watchers a try. Through this experience I have come to understand that it is not about being perfect, but rather understanding that making better choices will improve my relationship with myself and others. I highly recommend Weight Watchers to anyone struggling with their weight or needing a better foundation for making healthier food choices. With the holidays and the new year around the corner, we can start making healthier food choices today.

The Health Corner

Erin Chow
Clinical Care Manager

Keeping Health Top of Mind During the Holidays

For some, the first hint of trouble is the body aches, followed by a fever, maybe a tight cough where nothing comes up… And in a few hours, or in some cases a couple of days, it feels like a sudden wave of extreme fatigue has come along and just won’t let go.
Is it the flu? Is it COVID-19?
Well, one way to ensure that your risk is reduced for either of these possibilities, is to get vaccinated. Although last year, the cases of influenza were down, that was because people were told to stay home, wear a mask, and avoid crowds.
This year, as the restrictions slowly ease, you might plan to gather with friends and family during the holidays. After all, if you have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19, it should be safe. But that’s the same way the influenza spreads, too.
The combination of getting infected with COVID-19 and influenza at the same time could put increased strain on the body, making it much harder to fight either infection well.
If you are planning on travelling this year, make sure to check with your doctor about getting the flu shot, the COVID-19 vaccination shot, and the COVID-19 booster shot.
Although there are people who will still get infected after they  get vaccinated, the symptoms are generally much milder and not as bad as they would have been otherwise. Both vaccines are available at pharmacies and other locations state-wide.
We all need to remain vigilant about staying home when sick to help the body recover, and to avoid spreading germs to anyone else.
This is how we can help create a healthier holiday season – all year long!

Featured News

COVID-19 Vaccine Update for Children

As of October 21, 2021, all Hawaii residents ages 12 and older are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccinations. Children ages 5 to 11 are eligible to receive the Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine. Those under 18 years old, will need parental/guardian consent.
Stay up to date by visiting Hawaii Department of Health COVID-19 vaccine page.

COVID-19 Booster Shots

Booster doses of the Johnson & Johnson, Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines are authorized for select Hawaii residents. Consult with your healthcare provider if you have questions about whether or not you qualify to receive a booster shot.

For more information, visit:

Keep the Holiday Weight Off with These Programs

Now with our refreshed website, it's even easier to learn about your member benefits and programs aimed at keeping you at your best. Maintaining a healthy life can be overwhelming. Physical fitness and healthy body weight, smoking, and diabetes are huge impactors on a person’s health.
Our Live Well lifestyle programs can help put you on the right path. We have a wide variety of programs that can help you maintain a healthy weight.
Weight Watchers® Weight Loss Assistance program. Their tried-and-true SmartPoints® system encourages you to eat more fruits, veggies, and lean protein, while reducing sugar, and unhealthy fats.
When you complete the Weight Watchers® program within a year, you’ll receive a rebate up to $200.
Learn more about these programs and more on our website at

New Member ID Cards

All UHA members will be receiving a new Member ID card to align with the No Surprises Act legislation by January 1, 2022. The updated Member ID card will reflect the following new information:
  • medical plan annual deductible and annual maximum-out-of-pocket limits
  • a QR code to direct members to our member portal login page
  • updated contact information on the back of the card for assistance with member plan or benefits
For more information, read the Important Notice on Transparency in Coverage and No Surprises Act Overview.

Get to Know Your Benefits

We encourage you to get to know your benefits by going online! You have Secure 24/7 access to your health plan information from a PC, laptop, tablet, or phone–no matter where you are!
Member Portal
Once you’ve received you Member ID card you can sign up for the Member Portal by visiting The Member Portal lets you access your specific plan benefits, view or print a digital copy of your member ID card, and track your claims.

Member Pages
Member pages are designed to help you manage, understand, and use your coverage benefits.

Visit to learn about:
  • member programs
  • wellness & prevention benefits
  • prescription drug tips and tools.
Visit for recipes and helpful tips on:
  • healthy eating
  • well-being
  • activity & exercise

UHA Members: Get Your Free Flu Shot

We care about our members and the community, which is why we encourage everyone to get their flu vaccination this season. The flu shot is covered at $0 co-pay and getting protected against influenza will reduce confusion and the burden on our local healthcare system, while protecting our loved ones and those who are most at risk for serious flu complications.

UHA Connecting the Dots Podcasts

The UHA Connecting the Dots platform gives you instant access to webinars, podcasts and other health and wellness resources that can educate and inspire you. Learn from local healthcare experts with our podcast interviews.

Podcast 11 - Moving More for Better Health with Terri Dietz discusses why movement is important to our physical health and overall well-being.

Podcast 12 – The Science of Sleeping Well with Dr. Val Cacho discusses what happens to your body as you sleep, how to improve your quality of sleep and the impact sleep has on our mental health and more.

Community Giving
Kapi‘olani Radiothon for Kids
September 9 - 10, 2021

UHA and our associates have a heart for supporting organizations that promote better health.  As parents, extended ‘ohana and community members, many associates at UHA have their own “Kapi‘olani” connection—the Radiothon allows everyone an opportunity to extend their mahalo and give back in a meaningful way.
During  last year’s Radiothon, UHA gave back to the community by raising  funds that were used for a fourth apheresis machine to continue to expand Kapi‘olani’s Bone Marrow Transplant Program.
This year marked the 15th annual Kapi‘olani Radiothon for Kids! UHA is pleased to announce we were able to contribute a surprise donation of $100,000 on top of the $575,615 raised by the community! Together our community made the event’s 15th anniversary a remarkable milestone, it’s the largest amount raised in the event’s history! We are honored to aid Kapi‘olani’s programs that support greater community health. Together we made this event a memorable milestone.
Read the full article here.

Upcoming Events

Hawaii Business CEO of the Year
December 9, 2021

UHA is proud to sponsor this year’s event. Join us as we honor Hawaiʻi’s 2021 CEO of the Year Ray Vara, President & CEO of Hawai‘i Pacific Health. Registration to attend is now live.

Past Events

Worklife Reimagined Series
The Five Elements of Wellbeing
September 2, 2021 Webinar

We were pleased to welcome Ryan Wolf, the Wellbeing Lead at Gallup — a global analytics and advice firm that helps build exceptional workplaces — as he discussed the company’s framework on wellbeing and how it can be quantified to improve health, business, and performance outcomes. In this webinar, Wolf described the five elements of wellbeing and how leaders can measure and build a thriving and resilient workforce.

FAMES Hawai‘i

FAMES Hawai‘i — a nonprofit dedicated to mentoring, educating and developing leadership skills in Honolulu business owners and entrepreneurs — held its 16th annual free business and leadership workshop in August. Howard Lee, UHA President and CEO, was honored to be a keynote speaker at this event. Sarah Hosaka, UHA Employer Services Manager and president of FAMES Hawai‘i, was also in attendance.

Hawaii Business Wahine Forum
CEO Round Table
October 27 – 29, 2021

Wahine Forum is Hawaii’s largest leadership and career development conference for women. This year’s  14th annual event was held entirely online, spanning three days from October 27-29, 2021. UHA was proud to present the Wahine Forum CEO Roundtable during this event, honoring our continued support of education and empowerment to wahine across the state.
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