Global Health & International Medicine

ALOHA: Attaining Lasting Optimal Health for All.

The John A Burns School of Medicine’s basic mission is to teach and train high-quality physicians, bio-medical scientists, and allied health workers for Hawaiʻi and the Pacific. Our vision is ALOHA: Attaining Lasting Optimal Health for All.

Download the Global Health Handbook 2022-2023 (PDF)

Office of Global Health and International Medicine Staff Listing

Interim Director and Director of Japanese Affiliated Programs: Junji Machi, MD, PhD
Former Directors: Gregory Maskarinec, PhD, Satoru Izutsu, PhD
Staff: Paula Uchima, Emi Saegusa-Beecroft, MD, PhD and Mayo Civico
Advisors: Shinji Ito, MD, Katsuya Hisamichi, MD, Makoto Uchiyama, MD, Hideko Yamauchi, MD & Teruo Yamauchi, MD

The Committee on Global Health and International Medicine, within the Dean’s Office at JABSOM, is tasked with coordinating the school’s efforts in the global health arena.

JABSOM’s Global Health and International Medicine programs include the following:

Non-Credit Activities and Programs

GHIG is comprised of medical students and faculty interested in increasing awareness of global health issues, other cultures, and international sociopolitical topics. GHIG focuses on promoting a global and multicultural perspective to the medical curriculum and to encourage opportunities for JABSOM students to work internationally and live abroad. Contact: Elizabeth Kiefer, MD (

PSJ aims to make a lasting difference in our community through projects designed to address health and educational inequities, and to understand public policy in both local and global domains. Each spring PSJ students facilitate an elective course “Social Justice in Medicine”. The faculty for the social justice elective are Teresa Schiff, MD ( and Nash Witten, MD (

This one-year Graduate Certificate in Tropical Medicine offers a unique opportunity for medical students to study the many dimensions of tropical medicine and global health. Students gain hands-on experiences working in settings around the world. Completion of this certificate fulfills the academic requirements for the graduate to sit for the CTropMed diploma offered by the American Society for Tropical Medicine & Hygiene. Contact: William Gosnell, PhD (

The Area Health Education Center (AHEC) provides assistance with travel coordination, financial support for airfare, shared lodging and ground transportation for students from all years of medical training for both credit and non-credit experiences. AHEC rural healthcare training allows medical students to live in one of the US Affiliated Pacific Island communities for a month to gain cultural awareness and understanding as part of an inter-professional team with Social Work, Pharmacy, Nursing and Public Health students, as well as shadow medical providers and learn the many challenges and rewards of rural health care across Hawaiʻi’s neighboring islands, American Samoa, Republic of Palau, Guam, Federated States of Micronesian, and the Republic of the Marshall Islands. Contact: Kelley Withy, MD, PhD (

The collaborative program between JABSOM and Okinawa Prefecture for more than 50 years. PI Director: Junji Machi, MD, PhD. ( Contact: Paula Uchima (

Introduction of the US/Hawaiʻi medical education curriculum into Japanese medical schools, implemented in 2015. 15 Japanese medical schools and 5 hospitals are participating. HMEP InnovMethod HJMPH 2017 JM Director: Junji Machi, MD, PhD. ( Program Manager: Emi Saegusa-Beecroft, MD, PhD. (

Credit Opportunities

Students can receive credit by participating in an organization which has a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with JABSOM.

MS1s at JABSOM interested in an international elective for MD5 (summer), contact Dr. David Horio (

MS4s at JABSOM interested in an global health elective as a 4th year elective, contact Dr. Junji Machi ( and Paula Uchima (  

Below is a list of these organizations:

  • The University of Newcastle

  • Udayana University School of Medicine

  • Akita University School of Medicine
  • Gifu University School of Medicine
  • Hamamatsu University School of Medicine
  • Jikei University School of Medicine
  • Juntendo University School of Medicine
  • Kanazawa Medical University
  • Kanazawa Univerisity Graduate School of Medical Science and School of Medicine
  • Keio University School of Medicine
  • Kitasato University School of Medicine (pending)
  • Kobe University School of Medicine
  • Kochi Medical School
  • Nippon Medical School
  • Okinawa Chubu Hospital
  • Osaka Medical College
  • Saga Medical School
  • Showa University School of Medicine
  • St. Marianna University School of Medicine
  • Tokai University School of Medicine
  • University of Ryukyus
  • University of Tokyo, Faculty of Medicine and Graduate School of Medicine
  • Wakayama University School of Medicine

  • Jeju National University
  • Hallym University
  • Pusan National University School of Medicine

  • University of Otago, Otago Medical School (pending)
  • Te Mata O Te Tau, Massey University (Research Only)
  • Te Whare Kura, Faculty of Arts of the University of Auckland (Research Only)

  • Santo Tomas University, Manila

  • Kaohsiung Medical University
  • Taipei Medical University

  • Siriraj Hospital, Mahidol University
  • Thammasat University

  • Palau Community College
  • College of Micronesia American
  • Samoa Community College
  • The State of Pohnpei, Department of Health

International Observers

The Office of Global Health and International Medicine at the John A. Burns School of Medicine offers OBSERVATIONAL opportunities for international undergraduate medical observers. The basic requirements for this activity for observers are:

  1. Enrolled in schools with a current, signed Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaiʻi.
  2. In the 6th or final year of medical school, in good academic standing.
  3. Proficient in English (as screened by Zoom interview, prior to arrival) and submission of TOEFL score preferred.
  4. Payment of $100 US for liability insurance upon arrival.
  5. Possess current immunization record
  6. Health insurance required prior to arriving in Hawaiʻi.
  7. Valid passport
  8. Request for assignments are made on a “first come, first serve” basis.
  9. Curriculum vitae, personal statement, photo and other required documents.
  10. Consent Waiver Release Indemnity 2019 Form Fillable (PDF)

There is no tuition charge for undergraduate observers.

Note: Each observer is responsible for all personal expenses, airfare, health and travel insurance, rent, food and entertainment.

The observational period is for four weeks and available in Internal Medicine, and possibly other specialties. Observers may attend daily clinical rounds and participate in the educational activities of the department to which they are assigned. Clinical conferences, grand rounds, and other educational activities are scheduled on a weekly basis.

Work with assigned Staff physician in his/her private practice office and during hospital rounds.

Each observer is evaluated at termination with a report sent to the respective school.

Address all inquiries to Paula Kuwaye Uchima:  Phone: +1-808-547-9485

Annual Activities Report

See 2022 JABSOM Annual Global Health Report for a listing of JABSOM activities.