New doctors graduate from Waianae health center - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

New doctors graduate from Waianae health center

Ricardo Custodial Ricardo Custodial
Dodds Simangen Dodds Simangen
Adam Cohen Adam Cohen

By Oscar Valenzuela - bio | email

WAIANAE (HawaiiNewsNow) - Donning fresh new doctors coats and certificates in hand, five newly trained doctors graduated, ready to enter the world of primary physician care. A healthcare profession with diminishing numbers both nationwide and also here in Hawaii.

Doctor Ric Custodio is the medical director at the Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center. With Primary Care physician numbers in decline, he decided to be proactive and grow his own. "What you saw today, start a medical school and get that going to build our own." he said.

He researched the idea then with help, initiated his own school right on the Waianae campus. He hopes the program will ultimately provide homegrown medical caregivers in return. "The whole plan is to get Hawaii kids treating Hawaii people." he says.

Dr. Custodio partnered with the A.T. Still University Osteopathic Medical School. Students complete their first year in Arizona, during the next three years, the students are then assigned to one of 11 hub sites across the country.

The graduates say that living within the community they work, makes a world of difference to patients who are generally under-served.

Adam Cohen says he invested his time well within the Waianae community . "You're going to see them at the beach, if you go surfing, if you go fishing, diving and so you really do care for people because they're going to know that you're a good physician and that you're a good person." He says.

Newly christened as certified doctors, the future of medicine in this small community is looking bright, with a brand new school right in their own back yard.


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