Jim Clardy, M.D., to Direct UAMS Center for Graduate Medical Education

By Amy Widner

Clardy will work in this newly created position to galvanize statewide actions to increase medical residency slots and to ensure and improve the quality of new and existing training programs throughout the state.

Molly Gathright, M.D., will fill Clardy’s current role as associate dean for graduate medical education. She will serve as the designated institutional official, overseeing the college’s residency and fellowship programs and ensuring compliance with the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME).

Portrait of Dr. Gathright

Molly Gathright, M.D., will fill Clardy’s current role as associate dean for graduate medical education.

Medical school graduates are required to complete residency training to practice medicine. Physicians are more likely to remain in the state where they complete their residency, which is an important factor in a state like Arkansas where there are physician shortages, particularly in rural primary care. However, a 1997 cap on Medicare support for new residency slots has stymied increases in residency training.

“It is imperative to increase residency positions in Arkansas to support the pipeline of educating and training physicians for our state and to address current and future physician shortages,” said Christopher T. Westfall, M.D., UAMS executive vice chancellor and dean of the College of Medicine.

UAMS has set a goal to increase residency positions in Arkansas by 100 slots over the next 10 years, with at least 50% of these spots in primary care.

UAMS is working with numerous health systems and hospitals, communities and leaders to develop new residency programs.

“Dr. Clardy’s extensive experience and leadership in GME are remarkable assets for our state as we develop and implement strategies to accomplish these goals,” said Stephanie Gardner, Pharm.D., Ed.D., UAMS provost and chief strategy officer.

A professor of psychiatry, Clardy has been active in residency education since joining the faculty in 1993. He previously directed the Psychiatry Residency Program, and he has served as associate dean for GME since 2004. His national roles have included membership on the steering committee for the Association of American Medical Colleges Group on Resident Affairs and the ACGME Institutional Review Committee.

Gathright, an associate professor of psychiatry, has been active in residency education since joining the faculty in 2008. She served as program director of the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Residency before her appointment as assistant dean for GME in 2016. Other leadership roles have included directing the Transitional Year Residency and the Faculty Wellness Program.


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. It 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 www.uams.edu or www.uamshealth.com. Find us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or Instagram.

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