Nine doctors graduated this year from Waianae Medical School through the partnership between Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center and the A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona, the health center said Wednesday. More than 40 doctors have graduated from the program since its inception four years ago — 85 percent of whom selected to become primary care doctors.
“After their first year at the medical school, they go out into the community, so they’re learning their profession not only with the full force of academics but also having hands-on experience in the community health centers,” Dr. Stephen Bradley, WCCHC chief medical officer, told PBN. “The school looks not only for academics but they also look for heart and the commitment to community and primary care.” The program aims to train and recruit doctors to serve in rural and underserved communities, with a focus on outpatient services rather than a hospital experience.
In 2007, the Arizona osteopathic medical school selected the Waianae center as one of 11 “Hub Sites” for its first-year medical students to work with during their final three years of study. Medical students may participate in clinical rotations on Neighbor Islands, as well as other countries including American Samoa, Belau, New Zealand, Nepal, France and Africa.