UAMS Northwest Receives $194,200 Grant from Walmart Foundation to Aid Marshallese Diabetes Program

By ChaseYavondaC

The funds will support operations of the UAMS North Street Clinic, which opened in November 2014 specifically to offer diabetes testing and treatment for Marshallese patients. Some of the grant funding will enable UAMS to hire a registered nurse case manager for the clinic to better coordinate care for patients. The clinic, located on the Fayetteville campus, is staffed by UAMS Northwest faculty and student volunteers.

Northwest Arkansas is home to the largest Marshallese population in the continental United States, which experiences a significant and disproportionate percentage of type 2 diabetes. The diabetes rate among the Marshallese is one of the highest of any population group in the world — affecting as many of 50 percent of those living in northwest Arkansas.

“UAMS is grateful for the support from the Walmart Foundation, allowing us to offer better and more efficient care for this vulnerable and underserved population,” said Peter Kohler, M.D., vice chancellor for UAMS Northwest. “The North Street Clinic also offers invaluable interprofessional educational experiences for UAMS Northwest students — providing patient care side-by-side with students from other programs.”

The North Street Clinic offers health screenings, along with diabetes assessments and treatment for Marshallese patients. Individuals that require specialized care are referred to clinics including the UAMS Northwest Specialty Clinic, UAMS Family Medical Centers in Fayetteville or Springdale or other community partners.

UAMS began its focused outreach effort in 2013 with the goal of addressing health disparities in the region, including high incidences of chronic disease in underserved populations. That effort gained momentum in 2014 when UAMS Northwest was awarded a $2.1 million grant from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) to study ways for teaching diabetes self-management skills in coordination with care provided through the North Street Clinic. 

The UAMS Northwest team then received a three-year, $2.99 million grant from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to further focus on health disparities in both the Marshallese and Hispanic communities of Benton and Washington counties.

Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are committed to helping people live better through philanthropic efforts that draw on the strengths of Walmart in the arenas of sustainability, economic opportunity, and community. As part of Walmart’s commitment to creating a more sustainable food system worldwide, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation are leading the fight against hunger in the United States. They recently exceeded a $2 billion goal to fight hunger one year ahead of schedule and have donated more than 1.5 billion pounds of food to those in need across the country. To learn more about Walmart’s giving, visit

UAMS is the state's only health sciences university, with colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Health Professions and Public Health; a graduate school; a 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. UAMS is the only adult Level 1 trauma center in the state. UAMS has 3,275 students, 890 medical residents and fellows, and five dental residents. It is the state's largest public employer with more than 12,000 employees, including 1,200 physicians who provide care to patients at UAMS, its regional campuses, Arkansas Children's, the VA Medical Center and Baptist Health. Visit or Find us on Facebook, X (formerly Twitter), YouTube or Instagram.