Physicians On Call
Drs. Sam Cooper And Pani Shoja
Co-founders of Aloha Physicians
Where did you receive your schooling and training?
Dr. Pani Shoja: I attended American University of Antigua School of Medicine and completed my family medicine residency at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Phoenix.
Dr. Sam Cooper: I graduated from Temple University School of Medicine. I then completed my emergency medicine residency at University of California Irvine Medical Center.
How long have you been in practice?
Shoja: I spent the first four years of my professional career in family medicine. I worked as a primary care physician, an urgent care physician and a resort concierge physician. This was a great choice professionally because I was able to build and maintain a wide array of skills, while realizing that spending time with my patients and witnessing their road to recovery is the most satisfying aspect of my career.
I am now the CEO and a co-founder of Aloha Physicians. I also am one of the on-call physicians who patients will reach when they call for an in-home visit.
Cooper: I have been in practice for four years since completing my emergency-medicine residency.
I am now co-founder and co-CEO of Aloha Physicians, along with my partner Dr. Pani Shoja. I see patients as one of the on-call concierge physicians.
When did you open Aloha Physicians?
Shoja: I met Dr. Cooper shortly after moving to Oahu and we began to discuss the concept of on-call physicians and the good old “house doctor.” We realized that concierge urgent care services were nonexistent in Hawaii, and this is how the concept of Aloha Physicians was born.
We started building the concept in 2014 and launched earlier this year.
The idea is to create a higher level of medical service for the visitors and residents of Oahu. Aloha Physicians brings back the traditional doctor-patient experience to medical care where the physician comes to the patient. The convenience of house calls cannot be overstated. The patient tells us when and where they would like to be seen. This is even more important for our patients who are visitors with a limited amount of vacation time here on Oahu. By visiting them in their hotel room on their time, the disruption to their holiday is kept to a minimum.
How is your practice different from other medical services on the island?
Shoja: At Aloha Physicians, we have a unique care model. One of our most attractive attributes is that we are a same-day mobile service. This means we travel to treat the patient at their location, carry and provide medications, and follow up to ensure a speedy recovery. This is a benefit for travelers who become ill and do not want to spend their vacation waiting in a busy emergency room for treatment.
Offering a mobile, on-call physician service is a benefit for local resorts, tour groups, travel insurance companies and has become a standard of care in many big cities across the U.S.
Having traveling physicians is also a benefit for local offices that lose employees to illness on a daily basis.
Having a physician immediately available decreases the number of sick days taken at work, which is wonderful for patients as well as for business. We also provide care to patients who fall ill while they are in between primary care physicians.
Cooper: There is no other service on Oahu where you can call and have a fully licensed, top-notch physician come directly to you within an hour. Not only that, but we are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We are able to visit patients long after most of the urgent-care facilities on the island already have closed for the night.
What conditions do you treat?
Shoja: We are capable of treating a wide array of ailments including but not limited to the common cold, flu, ear infection, sinus infection, back pain, headache, dehydration, food poisoning, sore throat, cough, asthma, urinary tract infections and more.
Cooper: Also, bronchitis, allergies, rash, medication concerns, and nausea, vomiting and diarrhea, among many other minor ailments. We treat most conditions that a patient would consider going to an urgent care for.
Who comprises your team of health care providers?
Shoja: We provide board-certified family physicians and emergency physicians who are equipped and licensed to treat patients of all ages.
Anything else you’d like to mention?
Cooper: We are a fee-for-service business. We accept cash payment, credit card payment and travel insurance. We do not directly bill U.S. insurance companies. Many U.S. insurance companies will reimburse for our services, and clients can call their insurance for pre-authorization, if they desire. This model ensures that during the visit the focus is purely on the client rather than insurance paperwork.
To request a physician, call 518-3360. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit alohaphysicians.com.