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First Kaua‘i Medical Training Track cohort introduced

LIHU‘E — Six members of the inaugural cohort of the Kaua‘i Medical Training Track program were introduced and able to network with members of Kaua‘i’s healthcare community during a recent event held at The Plantation House by Gaylord’s at Kilohana.

The event was an opportunity for the first-year medical students — Jamie Emoto, Erin Evangelista, Dylan Lawton, Kirra Borrello, Ivana Yoon, and Brent Fujimoto — to meet the island’s healthcare partners, and provide the team from the University of Hawai‘i John A Burns School of Medicine to thank the medical community for its support of the innovative Kaua‘i Medical Training Tracking program.

The Kaua‘i Medical Training Track is a new multi-pronged program on Kaua‘i funded by a $10 million commitment from Dr. Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg. The goal of the program is to help address the physician shortage and directly improve the health and wellness of Kaua‘i’s families.

“As a doctor, I know that people are the most important thing in our medical system,” Dr. Chan said in a video greeting played during the meeting. “I’m inspired by you because you have dedicated your medical training to serve the healthcare needs of communities, particularly rural communities like on Kaua‘i. Mark and I are honored to support this program and look forward to following your progress as you train and hone your rural healthcare skills.”

Through the Kaua‘i Medical Training Track, six JABSOM medical students with ties to Kaua‘i, or another neighbor island, and a strong interest in rural health, are accepted into the program each year. The program funds tuition and fees for all four years, including transportation and lodging.

“When I saw that there was an opportunity early on in my training as a medical student, to learn rural medicine on Kaua‘i, I was incredibly interested,” said Emoto, one of the cohort students born on Kaua‘i. “I feel very honored to learn rural medicine from the very people who inspired me to pursue medicine. I am excited to learn alongside a group of bright and compassionate students who also have the common goal of learning from and caring for the people of rural Hawai‘i. We are all very grateful to Dr. Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg for this amazing opportunity.”

Dr. Travis Hong, director of Rural Training, oversees the Kaua‘i Medical Training Track.

“We are so grateful to the donors, the Kaua‘i Community College, and to our healthcare provider partners for their strong support and active engagement around this program,” Hong said. “It is going to be amazing to see our students build relationships and confidence as physicians while learning in our community clinics and local health care centers.”


Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 808-245-0453 or
Source: The Garden Island

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