UAMS to Host Special Needs in the Early Years Conference

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LITTLE ROCK – The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) will present its first Special Needs in the Early Years Conference to be held July 31-Aug.1 at the Peabody Hotel in Little Rock. The conference is open to educators, health care professionals and parents as well as the public.


Special Needs in the Early Years, presented by the UAMS Department of Pediatrics and the UAMS KIDS FIRST program, will focus on the current and emerging ideas in the area of early intervention and developmental needs of young children.


Along with many national speakers, UAMS will provide local experts to present at the conference, including Jayne Bellando, Ph.D., assistant professor of pediatrics; Lynn Taylor, M.D., child & adolescent psychiatrist; Karan B. Burnette, associate director, Partners for Inclusive Communities; and Beverly Miller, research associate in the Department of Pediatrics


“This is a new conference designed to focus on the challenges faced by young children with special needs and their families,” said Patrick Casey, M.D., medical director of UAMS KIDS FIRST and the Harvey and Bernice Jones Professor of Developmental Pediatrics in the UAMS College of Medicine. “We have attracted expert speakers from across the country who can share the most current information in their area of expertise. Our hope is that this will become an annual conference bringing the latest information to those who devote their time and energy to working with young children.”


Other conference speakers include Barbara Kalmanson, Ph.D., founder and clinical director of the Oak Hill School in Marin City, Calif., who will speak on infant mental health.  Other topics will include “The Impact of Prenatal Cocaine Exposure on Brain Development” and “Young Children with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome.”


Cost for the conference is $175 for both days for those who register by July 11. After July 11, registration will be $200. A special rate for parents is available by contacting the event organizers.


For more information, contact Bonnie Limbird or Kimberly Norris at 501-364-3620.


UAMS is the state’s only comprehensive academic health center, with five colleges, a graduate school, a medical center, six centers of excellence and a statewide network of regional centers. UAMS has 2,538 students and 733 medical residents. Its centers of excellence include the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, the Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, the Myeloma Institute for Research and Therapy, the Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, the Psychiatric Research Institute and the Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging. It is one of the state’s largest public employers with about 9,600 employees, including nearly 1,150 physicians who provide medical care to patients at UAMS, Arkansas Children’s Hospital, the VA Medical Center and UAMS’ Area Health Education Centers throughout the state. UAMS and its affiliates have an economic impact in Arkansas of $5 billion a year. Visit