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Volunteer faculty receive tax credit as appreciation of their services

June 10, 2018 —

Pictured above: Governor Ige holds the signed copy of the new law, surrounded by current and former Hawaiʻi State lawmakers who supported the measure. From left to right, Senator Jill Tokuda, Senator Lorraine Inouye, Senator Roz Baker, Senator Gilbert Keith-Agaran, Representative Angus McKelvey. Photo by Tina Shelton, UH Med.

By Tina Shelton, JABSOM Communications Director, with Deborah Manog Dimaya UH Med Now

More than 1,200 physicians in Hawaiʻi are volunteer medical professors.

They donate their time to help train the next generation of physicians for the University of Hawaiʻi (UH) John A. Burns School of Medicine (JABSOM). In clinics and in their offices statewide, these dedicated physicians – many who are JABSOM alumni – allow our future doctors to learn first-hand from experienced doctors while they are “on the job.”

On June 13, a new law was signed to allow these vital volunteer doctor/professors called “preceptors,” to receive an annual tax credit of up to $5,000 per year, in recognition of their longstanding service to our State. Volunteer professors for Advanced Practice Nurses at the University of Hawaiʻi School of Nursing and Dental Hygiene and pharmacists who volunteer for the UH Hilo Daniel Inouye School of Pharmacy qualify, too.

“The health preceptor Tax Credit will enable more students to go into pharmacy school, nursing school and medical school because they’ll have the professionals, the volunteer professionals, to help them at the end of their journey,” said Sen. Roz Baker, Chair of the State Senate’s Commerce, Consumer Protection and Health. By the “end of their journey,” she refers to the clinical training years which in medical school are in the third and fourth years, and throughout their post-graduate training as MD Residents, too.

JABSOM Dean Jerris Hedges noted that the Hawaiʻi law may be unique in extending the tax credit benefit to training of advanced practice nurses and pharmacists. “That is forward-looking, actually, because increasingly our community-based clinical training involves interdisciplinary teams of health providers,” said Hedges. Interdisciplinary, one-stop-shop clinics represent a model of care expected to continue to grow, he said.

Annually, JABSOM educates some 280 MD students and trains another 200-300 physicians in MD Residency or Fellowship (specialty training) programs in partnership with hospitals in Hawaiʻi. The volunteer clinical faculty members take the time to be aware of the most recent developments in medicine, and without them donating their time in their offices and in JABSOM classrooms, the medical school could not perform its mission in the exemplary fashion which has earned it superior rankings among its peer institutions.

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