Christina Bell and Kamal Masaki

Christina Bell and Kamal Masaki

The $11.5 million estate gift of Victor and Margaret “Peggy” Pavel continues to build areas of UH excellence for the benefit of Hawaiʻi’s people. The University of Hawaiʻi Foundation announced that from the gift, $1.88 million was designated to create endowed professorships in the John A. Burns School of Medicine.

“This gift will help us support two faculty members on an ongoing basis who will contribute to both training and research in geriatric medicine,” said Jerris Hedges, dean of the School of Medicine. “Expertise in geriatric medicine is very important for Hawaiʻi as we have one of the oldest populations in the U.S. We know that, as we age, a variety of conditions can develop. Having faculty who are focused on understanding the physiology of aging, and how to work hand-in-hand with the patient to have healthy aging, is really a key part of our training program.

Professor Kamal Masaki and Associate Professor Christina Bell have been selected as the Victor and Peggy Brandstrom Pavel Endowed Professors in Medicine.

“Drs. Masaki and Bell exemplify the quality and depth of leadership we have within our Department of Geriatric Medicine at JABSOM,” said Hedges. “Both are outstanding clinicians and educators who are committed to training the next generation of geriatricians for our community. They serve as excellent role models and mentors for our medical students, residents, fellows and allied health professionals, inspiring them to consider careers in this critically needed field of medicine.”

The Victor and Peggy Brandstrom Pavel Endowed Professors in Medicine

Kamal Masaki

Kamal Masaki, professor and chair of the Department of Geriatric Medicine, was one of the first graduates of the UH Fellowship Program in Geriatric Medicine. Her research and teaching track record is extensive and includes being part of a research team focused on chronic disease epidemiology in the elderly.

She has served as clinical director of the Honolulu-Asia Aging Study, Honolulu Heart Program, The Women’s Health Initiative and numerous other related studies for the past 23 years. In addition, she has co-authored more than 200 manuscripts, the majority of which have been published in national peer-reviewed journals.

Masaki continues to actively teach at all levels, particularly in the Geriatric Medicine Fellowship Program, and is responsible for all curricula in geriatric medicine and palliative medicine for UH medical students, residency programs, allied health students and professionals.

Christina Bell

Christina Bell, associate professor in the Department of Geriatric Medicine, has served as the program director of the UH Fellowship Program in Geriatric Medicine for the past two years.

She earned her medical degree at the John A. Burns School of Medicine and after completing her family medicine residency training on the mainland, she returned to practice medicine in Keaʻau for three years. She witnessed first-hand Hawaiʻi’s need for physicians trained in geriatric medicine.

Bell is the primary author or co-author on 31 publications, over 40 scientific abstracts and was selected for a five-year Geriatric Academic Career Award from the Health Resources and Services Administration.

Read more about Masaki and Bell in the UH Foundation news release.

Dean Hedges shares the impact of the fund

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