Grant T. Okawa, MD
I speak: English
My gender: Male
Where I practice
I was born and raised in Honolulu. During college I moved to California, where I completed my undergraduate education and medical training. In 1988 I returned to Hawaii to be closer to family.
About my practice
Science fascinated me as far back as I can remember. I enjoyed figuring out how living things worked, and I loved reading books about plants and animals. My father always encouraged me to do what I really enjoyed, and I am grateful for his wise counsel. While volunteering at the university hospital during college, I discovered my passion for medicine. This field would allow me to apply my scientific training to improving people’s health. Around the same time I felt a spiritual calling and mission to use the gifts I had been blessed with to bring healing and wholeness to others. Internal medicine is a broad field that provides opportunities to learn and grow professionally. It gives me the opportunity to make complex diagnoses and solve problems, a challenge that I welcome. It is important for medical practice to be based on the best available scientific evidence. The need to better understand how to critically read the relevant medical literature led me to a master’s degree in epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. I am also part of the interregional Kaiser Permanente initiative to develop evidence-based guidelines. Here at the Hawaii Permanente Medical Group (HPMG) I serve as the associate medical director for knowledge management. I have co-written articles for The Permanente Journal on the use of the electronic health record system, the electronic record’s effect on care, and on Kaiser Permanente’s evidence-based guideline process. At HPMG we work together to find the best way to take care of our patients. We innovate and collaborate to get it right for the patient. There is a spirit of collegiality that allows us to practice high quality medicine and to attract some of the best and brightest physicians. It is a privilege to work with these professionals. I believe that it is important not only to diagnose and treat illness but to bring healing and health to the whole person—body, mind, and spirit. When there is balance in all of these areas, one is able to live life more fully. In my opinion the best way to connect with the patients is by having a genuine interest in their well-being, by involving them in decisions regarding their health, and by being there to answer questions, provide advice, and coordinate their care.
How I thrive
My regular exercise consists of walking and working out at the gym. Attending church and regular prayer help keep me emotionally and spiritually centered. I also enjoy reading, spending time with my family and our dog, and experiencing new cultures and cuisines.