UAMS Continues to Expand Cancer Education With Electric Cooperatives Grant

By todd

LITTLE ROCK – Increased access to cancer screenings and wider distribution of cancer education resources throughout Arkansas are being funded by a $20,000 installment of a $100,000 grant to the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) from the Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas aimed at reducing cancer in the state.


As a direct result of the grant from the electric cooperatives, hundreds of Arkansans have received cancer screenings. Also, the effort has raised awareness of cancer risks and education resources through distribution of thousands of pieces of literature at electric cooperative offices across the state. The electric cooperatives recently presented the latest installment of its five-year, $100,000 commitment to the Cancer Control Outreach Program operated by UAMS and its Arkansas Cancer Research Center.


“The Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas are playing an enormous and integral role in helping us raise awareness and educate Arkansans about cancer, particularly in parts of the state underserved by health care resources,” said Ronda Henry-Tillman, M.D., director of the UAMS/ ACRC Cancer Control Program and an associate professor of surgery in the UAMS College of Medicine. “We appreciate their continued support and will keep looking for ways to expand our outreach programs and activities.”


The electric cooperatives pledged the money to UAMS and the ACRC in 2002 to find ways to reduce cancer incidence and mortality in Arkansas’ rural areas.


About 6,700 pieces of educational literature were distributed among First Electric Cooperative, Mississippi County Electric Cooperative, Arkansas Electric Cooperative and Woodruff Electric Cooperative offices for customers and visitors. The partnership between the UAMS/ ACRC Cancer Control Program and the electric cooperatives also extended to education and screening activities at special events held across the state.


The UAMS/ ACRC Cancer Control Program has provided cancer screenings and education to electric cooperative employees in addition to other screening events across Arkansas. The program reported conducting about 420 prostate, breast and colorectal cancer screenings this year through October funded by the electric cooperatives pledge.


UAMS is the state’s only comprehensive academic health center, with five colleges, a graduate school, a medical center, five centers of excellence and a statewide network of regional centers. UAMS has about 2,170 students and 650 residents and is the state’s largest public employer with almost 9,000 employees. UAMS and its affiliates have an economic impact in Arkansas of $4 billion a year.


UAMS centers of excellence are the Arkansas Cancer Research Center, Harvey and Bernice Jones Eye Institute, Donald W. Reynolds Center on Aging, Myeloma Institute for Research and Therapy and Jackson T. Stephens Spine and Neurosciences Institute.