UAMS Community Health & Research Moves to New Facility in Springdale

By David Wise

The Office of Community Health & Research is moving from its previous location on the UAMS Northwest Regional Campus in Fayetteville to a 28,000-square-foot building at 2708 S. 48th St. in Springdale. The move will allow Community Health & Research staff to strengthen collaborations with community partners in the region and support the growing team of over 150 team members.

“Community Health & Research has established itself at the forefront of impactful change in the health outcomes of populations in Northwest Arkansas and beyond,” said Pearl McElfish, Ph.D., division director of Community Health & Research. “Springdale is home to so many wonderful community organizations who we’re proud to call our partners and friends, and this move to a central Northwest Arkansas location will allow us to better support our community and the populations we serve.”

The Office of Community Health & Research was founded in 2012 to reduce health disparities and increase access to chronic disease prevention and management services in Northwest Arkansas. In 2015, Community Health & Research launched the Center for Pacific Islander Health, the first center in the United States to focus solely on Pacific Islander health issues through research, community programs, training and policy.

Today, Community Health & Research is a  successful and productive research office with a team of more than 150 full-time staff and faculty implementing more than 75 community-engaged projects to reduce health disparities in Northwest Arkansas, across the state and nationally. In Northwest Arkansas, Community Heath & Research staff have worked with community members and partner organizations to provide healthier foods in schools and community meal programs; increase positive birth outcomes and support through family wellness programs; lower COVID-19 infection rates among Marshallese and Hispanic populations; improve care and outcomes for individuals adversely impacted by Type 2 diabetes; and more.

The pioneering work of the office has established a nationally recognized presence in Northwest Arkansas, engaging in innovative collaborations with regional, statewide and national organizations dedicated to eliminating health disparities and improving health outcomes for all. Last year, the office’s work in Marshallese, Hispanic and rural communities helped earn UAMS the Spencer Foreman Award for Outstanding Community Engagement from the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC).

“Our work would not be possible without the incredible people and community partners who have guided and assisted our work over the last 10 years,” said Lisa M. Smith, executive director of Community Health & Research. “As we enter this next phase of our journey, we look forward to providing more support to our partners and our community as we create a better state of health for all.”

For more information about the UAMS Office of Community Health & Research, 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. U.S. News & World Report recognized UAMS Medical Center as a Best Hospital for 2021-22; ranked its ear, nose and throat program among the top 50 nationwide for the third year; and named five areas as high performing — colon cancer surgery, diabetes, hip replacement, knee replacement and stroke. Forbes magazine ranked UAMS as seventh in the nation on its Best Employers for Diversity list. UAMS also ranked in the top 30% nationwide on Forbes’ Best Employers for Women list and was the only Arkansas employer included. UAMS has 3,047 students, 873 medical residents and fellows, and six 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 Children’s, the VA Medical Center and Baptist Health.

The UAMS Northwest Regional Campus includes 288 medical, pharmacy, nursing and health professions students, 64 medical and pharmacy residents, two sports medicine fellows, and 1,000 community-based faculty. The campus has nine clinics including a student-led clinic and physical, occupational and speech therapy. Faculty conduct research to reduce health disparities. Visit or Find us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or Instagram.