UAMS Forms Center to Develop Alliances for Providing Health Care Close to Home

By Ben Boulden

The newly created Center for Healthcare Enhancement and Development will explore ways for UAMS to support and work with hospitals and clinics throughout the state to provide better health care for Arkansans.

Tim Hill, formerly director of the UAMS Rural Hospital Program and UAMS Center for Rural Health, leads the new center along with associate directors Justin Hunt, M.D., and Mark Jansen, M.D.

Hill said the center has facilitated a partnership with the South Arkansas Ear, Nose & Throat Clinic in Pine Bluff operated by Stephen Shorts, M.D., to enable the clinic to serve more patients

Beginning this week, UAMS ear, nose and throat surgeons Jennings Boyette, M.D., and Angela Paddack, M.D., will each practice one day a week at Shorts’ clinic. Boyette and Paddack also will each perform surgery one day a week at Jefferson Regional Medical Center in Pine Bluff as part of the arrangement.

James Suen, M.D., chair of the Department of Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery, was instrumental is facilitating this partnership. Boyette received a medical degree from UAMS, and he and Paddack both served residencies at UAMS. Paddack is completing a one-year fellowship at UAMS, while Boyette completed a facial plastic and reconstructive surgery fellowship at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in Shreveport, La.

Hill said ideas for partnerships exist across the state, including the use of telemedicine to bring specialty care to areas that lack those services.

“The enthusiasm and creativity that we’re sensing is awesome,” Hill said. “We are rethinking both the business model and the health care model. We are coming up with some creative ideas to meet the needs for access to care and improve the health and health care for all Arkansans.”

“The need is certainly there,” Hunt said. “We’re talking to hospitals and providers across the state to determine what their needs are and eventually try to fill those needs.”

In another venture, UAMS will assist White River Health System in Batesville by treating many of its radiation oncology patients for several months in Little Rock while the Batesville hospital installs new technology and equipment..



UAMS is the state's only health sciences university, with colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Health Professions and Public Health; a graduate school; hospital; a main campus in Little Rock; a Northwest Arkansas regional campus in Fayetteville; a statewide network of regional campuses; and seven institutes: the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, Psychiatric Research Institute, Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging, Translational Research Institute and Institute for Digital Health & Innovation. UAMS includes UAMS Health, a statewide health system that encompasses all of UAMS' clinical enterprise including its hospital, regional clinics and clinics it operates or staffs in cooperation with other providers. UAMS is the only adult Level 1 trauma center in the state. U.S. News & World Report named UAMS Medical Center the state's Best Hospital; ranked its ear, nose and throat program among the top 50 nationwide; and named six areas as high performing — cancer, colon cancer surgery, heart failure, hip replacement, knee replacement and lung cancer surgery. UAMS has 2,727 students, 870 medical residents and five dental residents. It is the state's largest public employer with more than 10,000 employees, including 1,200 physicians who provide care to patients at UAMS, its regional campuses, Arkansas Childrens Hospital, the VA Medical Center and Baptist Health. Visit or Find us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or Instagram.