HRSA, the Health Resources and Services Administration agency in the US Department of Health and Human Services, has awarded a $4.66 million grant designed to increase the number of primary care physicians in underserved communities in Arkansas.
The director of the project is Christopher T. Westfall MD, FACS (UAMS Executive Vice Chancellor and Dean of the College of Medicine). Co-directors are Daniel A. Knight MD, FAAFP (Chair, UAMS Department of Family and Preventive Medicine) and Marcia Byers PhD, RN (Director of Clinical Innovation and Research for Regional Programs). The evaluator of the project is Diane Jarrett EdD (DFPM Director of Education and Communications).
Specific objectives of the grant project include enhancing recruitment and retention to increase the number of medical students from Arkansas’ rural and medically underserved communities; expanding medical student clinical opportunities throughout the state; and in general attracting more students to practice in rural and medically underserved communities.
Partners in the program include the UAMS College of Medicine, UAMS Department of Family and Preventive Medicine, UAMS Regional Programs, Community Health Centers of Arkansas, the Arkansas Rural Health Partnership – Critical Access Hospitals and Rural Health Clinics, the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, and Philander Smith College, among others.