Public Invited to Free UAMS Drug Addiction Symposium

By David Robinson

The free symposium, “Drug Addiction: Science & Society,” is from 1:30 – 4 p.m. in the UAMS I. Dodd Wilson Education Building, room 126. It will begin with the keynote by Keith Humphreys, Ph.D., a psychiatry and behavioral sciences researcher and health policy associate at Stanford University. Humphreys, who provided health policy advice to the White House during formation of the Affordable Care Act in 2009-10, will speak on, “How researchers and clinicians can make better public policy for people with addictions.”

Following his presentation, Humphreys and UAMS’ Clint Kilts, Ph.D., director of the Brain Imaging Research Center (BIRC), will lead a panel discussion with: 

  • Laura James, M.D., a UAMS pediatric physician and researcher
  • Chris Rule, L.C.S.W., (Licensed Clinical Social Worker), instructor for the UAMS College of Medicine
  • Frances Flener, Arkansas drug director
  • Carole Baxter, M.S., executive director, Recovery Centers of Arkansas 

“Our purpose is to be a resource for the community as we all seek to address drug addiction,” said Clint Kilts, Ph.D., director of the Helen L. Porter & James T. Dyke Brain Imaging Research Center (BIRC) at the UAMS Psychiatric Research Institute and the symposium’s chief architect. “The experts assembled here will shed new light on the many complex issues associated with addiction science, treatment and policy.” 

The symposium is co-sponsored by the UAMS Psychiatric Research Institute, the Translational Research Institute, the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology in the College of Medicine, and the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) T32 Training Grant. 

Humphreys, a Veterans Administration senior research career scientist, is a clinical/community psychologist by training. His research focuses on the prevention and treatment of addictive disorders and on the extent to which subjects in medical research differ from patients seen in everyday clinical practice. Since 2004,

Humphreys has volunteered as a consultant and teacher in the multinational humanitarian effort to rebuild the psychiatric care system of Iraq, for which he won the American Psychological Association’s Award for Distinguished Contribution to the Public Interest. 

UAMS is the state’s only comprehensive academic health center, with colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Health Professions and Public Health; a graduate school; a hospital; a statewide network of regional centers; and seven institutes: 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, the Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging and the Translational Research Institute. Named best Little Rock metropolitan area hospital by U.S. News & World Report, it is the only adult Level 1 trauma center in the state. UAMS has more than 2,800 students and 790 medical residents. It is the state’s largest public employer with more than 10,000 employees, including about 1,000 physicians and other professionals who provide care to patients at UAMS, Arkansas Children’s Hospital, the VA Medical Center and UAMS’ Area Health Education Centers throughout the state. Visit or