HILO, Hawaii – A $250,000 grant to support a needed primary care medical training program was handed over on Monday.
Hilo Medical Center’s Hawaii Health Systems Corporation Primary Care Training Program was he recipient of the grant, given by UnitedHealthcare.
According to an event media release:
|This unique, interdisciplinary program is in collaboration with University of Hawaii at Hilo’s School of Nursing, The Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy, the University of Hawaii at Manoa’s School of Nursing and Dental Hygiene, and the University of Hawaii at Manoa’s John A. Burns School of Medicine’s Department of Psychiatry. The program was conceived as a way to increase access to quality primary care while training the next generation of physicians in Hawaii.
“Hawaii faces a dire shortage of physicians, so we are honored to have the opportunity to work with Hilo Medical Center’s HHSC PCTP to help fill that need,” said Ronald Fujimoto, M.D., chief medical officer, UnitedHealthcare of Hawaii.
Governor Neil Abercrombie, and UnitedHealth Group leaders including Executive Vice President Anthony Welters, and other community leaders, paid a visit to the facility. The video above was provided by Communications Pacific, Inc.
The grant helps to fund family medicine residents who will train at the Hawaii Island Family Health Center and provide valuable primary care services to local children, adults and families.
According to the “Hawai’i Physician Workforce Assessment Project” report, the Big Island saw a 34 percent physician shortage in 2012 – the estimated number of physician care hours delivered compared to the hours of care in demand. Statewide, the shortage was 18 percent.
“We truly appreciate UnitedHealthcare’s funding of this grant to support our primary care training program,” said Howard Ainsley, East Hawaii Regional CEO at Hilo Medical Center. “This is a tremendous shot in the arm in helping establish this vital program for our community. In time we hope these physicians will remain on the Big Island and throughout Hawaii.”