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College of Medicine looks over the horizon.

Exciting times just ahead for many UAMS programs

Although UAMS health-education programs have grown dramatically during the past decade, the next decade will be even more exciting. We are about midway through the UAMS Invest in Life! Capital Campaign, so this is an appropriate moment to reflect upon what has been accomplished so far and to "look over the horizon."


Since its opening in September 1989, the Arkansas Cancer Research Center (ACRC) has experienced rapid growth in its comprehensive services from cancer diagnosis and therapy to fundamental research. Numbers of both faculty members and patient visits have more than doubled, and much of this growth is attributed to the bone marrow transplantation program. Referrals from around the world have resulted in a total of 500 such transplants, which includes 50 performed on an outpatient basis.


The mutually supportive affiliation between the College of Medicine and the Little Rock and North Little Rock campuses of the John L. McClellan Memorial Veterans Affairs Medical Center has proven successful in both the areas of patient care and research funding.

In 1992 care was given for about 17,000 inpatients and more than 280,000 outpatients, while researchers have competed for grants that total about $4.25 million per year.

This outstanding VA health complex not only provides high quality primary, secondary and tertiary care, but also supports 125 physician-residents in the various medical disciplines; thus, serving Arkansas as a major educational site for medical students as they progress through their clinical training.


Most of the pediatrics education provided by UAMS is located at Arkansas Children's Hospital (ACH), a private, but closely affiliated institution near the UAMS campus. In the past 15 years, ACH has grown from approximately 50 chronic-care beds to a modern, state-of-the-art children's hospital with 266 beds and comprehensive services in every field.

UAMS faculty from the College of Medicine care for most ACH patients, and a responsive, statewide pediatrics referral-service network that is supported by two transport helicopters enables all Arkansas children, regardless of financial status, access to necessary medical care. This proven venture between UAMS and ACH has expanded UAMS educational and research programs while greatly enhancing the quality of health care for all children in the state.


Since the establishment of the National Center for Toxicological Research (NCTR) at nearby Jefferson, Ark., UAMS and the NCTR have collaborated in both training and research. The Interdisciplinary Toxicology Ph.D. Training Program combines the "intellectual horsepower" of the many doctorate-level toxicologists employed by NCTR and the Ph.D. training programs in the basic sciences at UAMS, while offering opportunities for research at either institution. This benefits both UAMS and NCTR by providing scientists and skilled research assistants for their laboratories.

Thus far, UAMS and NCTR have cooperated in the study of substance abuse and alcoholism, which has been one of the most active investigative areas at UAMS in the past decade.

About five years ago, UAMS set a challenging goal: to double the level of research funding within four years. That goal has been accomplished. And now it has been reaffirmed - we intend to double it again within four years!


By focusing on carefully selected areas of excellence, we will advance our efforts. The research areas identified for development are: alcohol and drug abuse, neuroscience, toxicology, cancer, molecular biology, geriatrics, children's diseases, musculoskeletal disease, health-services research and eye disease.

In clinical medicine, the College of Medicine is committed to helping others provide high-quality, cost-effective care to Arkansans, while making state-of-the-art, sophisticated tertiary care programs accessible to our citizens. Our educational emphasis is to provide well-educated physicians, with a special effort to meet the primary-care and rural needs of the state. The college is especially proud of the growing accomplishments of its faculty, who will be responsible for the implementation and continuing success of its ambitious programs. Our goal during the few years remaining in this century is to continue and even accelerate our progress, moving the College of Medicine into the ranks of the very best American medical schools.
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Title Annotation:University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
Author:Wilson, I. Dodd
Publication:Arkansas Business
Date:Aug 16, 1993
Previous Article:UAMS responds to an aging Arkansas.
Next Article:Major money.

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