Richard H. Turnage, M.D., FACS, a clinical and academic leader at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) for over a decade, has been named executive associate dean for clinical affairs in the UAMS College of Medicine (COM).
“We are very pleased to have Dr. Turnage again leading clinical initiatives throughout our college,” said UAMS Executive Vice Chancellor and COM Dean Christopher T. Westfall, M.D., FACS. “Richard brings exceptional expertise in clinical operations and a strong commitment to our integrated missions in education and research to this post.”
Turnage was recruited to UAMS as professor and chair of the Department of Surgery in 2008 after leading clinical and academic programs in surgery at other institutions for nearly two decades. During his tenure as chair of the Department of Surgery, Turnage also served as interim chair of two other departments, Urology in 2010-2012 and Radiology in 2012-2014. He assumed a central leadership role in the college with his appointment as executive associate dean for clinical affairs in 2014. He served as interim dean of the college in 2015.
In addition to his college leadership positions, Turnage has been a key leader in UAMS’ clinical operations. As chair of the Hospital Medical Board from 2012 to 2014, he facilitated a heightened focus on patient- and family-centered care, safety, patient satisfaction, and transparent reporting of clinical quality metrics. He subsequently led development and implementation of UAMS’ integrated clinical enterprise and served as chief service line officer. He served as vice chancellor for clinical programs and CEO of UAMS Medical Center from 2016 until returning to the college to assume his current position as executive associate dean in May 2019.
Turnage received his medical degree from the LSU School of Medicine in Shreveport in 1983. He completed his residency in general surgery at the University of Michigan Medical Center, serving as chief resident and completing a research fellowship before joining the faculty. He went on to hold faculty and clinical leadership posts at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and Dallas VA Medical Center, and later at LSU Shreveport, where he served as chair of the Department of Surgery for seven years prior to his recruitment to UAMS.