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UHP Moving Forward: UHP, JABSOM launch affiliation with Hawaii Pacific Health

Featured photo of Dr. Lee Buenconsejo-Lum, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs at JABSOM and a professor of Family Medicine, teaching medical students. Vina Cristobal photo.

Hawai‘i Pacific Health and the University of Hawai‘i have established an academic affiliation agreement to formalize their collaborative efforts around medical education and training, research, clinical services and patient care with the ultimate goal of addressing the health care needs of the state of Hawai‘i. The agreement is a three-party affiliation agreement between Hawai‘i Pacific Health, the University of Hawai‘i John A. Burns School of Medicine (JABSOM) and University Health Partners of Hawai‘i (UHP), JABSOM’s faculty practice group.
Areas of focus outlined within the agreement that will benefit patients and the state include:

  • Creating synergies and aligning workforces to enhance models of care, strengthen academic programs and further each organization’s mission. 
  • Collaboration on health care education at Hawai‘i Pacific Health medical centers and clinical sites continuing to provide education and training opportunities for residents, medical students, and other university learners.
  • Enhanced support of research and other scholarly activities in Hawai‘i that advance medical knowledge and health sciences.
  • Strengthening partnership efforts on programs and activities that support the next generation of physicians and health care providers for Hawai‘i.
  • Coordination of clinical services and physician engagement in programs designed to improve health care for the residents of Hawai‘i.

“Our hospitals have served as education and training sites for the University of Hawai‘i and the John A. Burns School of Medicine for years, and we are proud to formalize this partnership and further enhance our collaborative efforts,” said Ray Vara, President and CEO of Hawai‘i Pacific Health. “The COVID-19 pandemic has shined a spotlight on how essential it is for Hawai‘i’s residents to have access to quality health care, and our partnership with the University of Hawai‘i will help us improve the health of our communities and work toward eliminating the disparities and inequities that exist today.”


“The University of Hawaiʻi and the John A. Burns School of Medicine have partnered with Hawaiʻi Pacific Health on many levels to advance medical education and training to support Hawaiʻi’s future health care needs,” said University of Hawaii President David Lassner. “This new enhanced agreement reinforces our joint commitment to support medical education beginning with medical school through residency and fellowship training.”


As part of the agreement, JABSOM faculty who provide patient care as UHP physicians in the areas of family medicine and obstetrics and gynecology will be integrated into the Hawai‘i Pacific Health Medical Group (HPHMG), Hawai‘i Pacific Health’s employed physician and advanced practice provider group.


“In order to truly create a healthier Hawai‘i, we must support the growth and development of the next generation of health care providers for the state,” said Dr. Leslie Chun, HPHMG CEO. “This enhanced partnership with the university and the medical school enables us to ensure high-quality care will continue to be available for our patients in the years ahead, particularly in the areas of family medicine and obstetrics and gynecology, which are areas for which the state has a critical need for more physicians.”


These UHP clinical providers will join other HPHMG employed academic clinicians with JABSOM faculty appointments in pediatrics and other disciplines. Medical education, research and training activities at Hawai‘i Pacific Health facilities, including Kapi‘olani Medical Center for Women & Children (OB-GYN) and Pali Momi Medical Center (family medicine), are poised to advance in a highly synergistic manner. JABSOM will continue to oversee the academic activities of the faculty, and UHP will help sustain support of JABSOM’s teaching and research mission.


“Through this opportunity to build synergy with Hawaiʻi Pacific Health, JABSOM becomes better positioned to educate and train our next generation of physicians,” said JABSOM Dean Jerris Hedges. “The academic affiliation agreement will focus on practice and training in pediatrics, family medicine and obstetrics & gynecology with Hawaʻi Pacific Health. We look forward to many years of this mutually beneficial alliance, which will specifically align mission specific goals through strategic planning, operational collaborations and targeted fiscal commitments.” 

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