Updated: October 2, 2023
Kaiser Permanente Hawaii named Monica Nickolas, RN BSN, MPH as the new director of clinic operations. She previously was senior clinic director for the Kaiser Permanente Maui Lani Clinic in Wailuku.
She will oversee administrative operations for Kaiser Permanente specialty clinics and facilities across the state, ensuring members receive high-quality, accessible and cost-effective health care services. She also will lead the development and implementation of key initiatives to improve member satisfaction and quality of care.
Nickolas started her career in California, managing several Federally Qualified Community Health Centers with a mission to provide quality health care to the uninsured and underinsured communities of Long Beach and the San Fernando Valley area. She transitioned to the MemorialCare Medical Group, where she elevated from practice manager to RN Operations Manager, overseeing pediatric primary care and specialty centers in an administrative capacity. During this time, she also served as a registered nurse for Presbyterian Intercommunity Hospital, caring for patients in the medical-surgical and certified stroke units.
Nickolas joined Kaiser Permanente in 2014, leading a high-performing team of nurses as an RN ambulatory care manager in the Southern California region. She transferred to the Hawaiʻi region as an RN clinic manager at the Wailuku Medical Office, managing the operations and staff of various departments including pediatric subspecialties, ENT, cardiology and dermatology. She was promoted to senior clinic manager for the Maui Lani location.
Most recently, Nickolas was the RN service line director of pediatrics in the Northern California region, overseeing four pediatric sites with more than 125 support staff and physicians. There she improved patient satisfaction scores and quality measures in various areas including childhood and flu immunizations.
“All of us at Kaiser Permanente Hawaiʻi are excited to welcome Monica back to our islands,” said Maribel Avila-Kunkel, M.H.A. vice president Ambulatory & Clinical Services Kaiser Permanente Hawaiʻi. “Monica brings with her a wealth of knowledge and medical expertise. Her history of providing high-quality health care to our members will prove an asset in nurturing a happy and healthy Hawaiʻi.”
Nickolas holds an Associate Degree in nursing from Mount St. Mary’s University in Los Angeles; a Bachelor of Science in nursing from California State University, Long Beach; a Bachelor of Arts in psychology with an emphasis in child development from the University of California, Berkeley; and a Master of Public Health from UCLA.