HONOLULU, Hawaii — The Department of Health and Human Services announced Thursday it is suspending all appointments of administrators for the Office of Administrative Professional Day (OAPD) at the HAWAII STATE DEPARTMENT, including the appointment of the director of OAPD.

The suspension is effective immediately.

The OAPA Director of OAS, which is responsible for administering OAP and its services to employees, is expected to be reassigned to another position at the OAS.

The OAP director is responsible to the Office for Health Care Administration.

The announcement came just hours after HAWASA Health Care Administrator Scott D. Smith and Deputy Health and Safety Commissioner Tom A. Kowalczyk resigned.

Smith was hired by the agency in March 2016.

He was a senior vice president of administration at the time, and he resigned after the agency learned of his alleged role in a cover-up involving the alleged death of a patient at the Honolulu VA Medical Center in January 2018.

In a letter to the OAP Director, the OHA stated Smith was terminated for not being responsive to the needs of patients, the HHA and OAP.

The letter said the OAWS office has been contacted by a number of health care providers about possible misconduct, including patients and other employees, but none have reported any evidence of misconduct.

The letter said it has no evidence that the OAMA has been unable to properly administer the OOPD, nor that the Office has failed to provide a level playing field for OAP employees.