Justin Hunt

Justin Hunt B&W Pic

Justin is a psychiatrist and mental health services researcher who recently returned to the faculty of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) as the Director of the UAMS Faculty Wellness Program and the Medical Director of the new Center for Healthcare Enhancement and Development (CHED), a joint initiative between the UAMS College of Medicine and UAMS Medical Center to grow UAMS’ external strategic relationships throughout AR.  The main goal of CHED is to use UAMS’ strength, capacity, and statewide reach to provide the best and most appropriate care closest to home.  In addition, he serves as a core faculty member within the VA South Central Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center (MIRECC) through which he is working on a VA Office of Rural Health-funded program to develop a student Veteran peer support and linkage to care program in rural Arkansas colleges.  Justin sees patients at both the UAMS Psych Research Institute and the Central AR VA.

Prior to returning to UAMS and academia, he served as the Vice President and Medical Director of the ValueOptions Arkansas. During his tenure with ValueOptions Arkansas, he had the opportunity to work with the Arkansas Department of Human Services and McKinsey and Co. on the development of two episodes of care within the Arkansas Payment Improvement Initiative: Oppositional Defiant Disorder and comorbid ADHD/Oppositional Defiant Disorder. He had the privilege of co-chairing the clinical workgroups for each of these episodes and being a part of this most interesting effort.  The State of Arkansas is engaged in perhaps one of the most interesting state health policy experiments in the country through the Arkansas Payment Improvement Initiative that involves not only public, but also private payors in our state.  The payors are moving forth toward value and episode-based reimbursement in addition to employing population health strategies in patient centered medical homes and health homes for chronic behavioral health conditions and developmental disabilities.

In addition to this work in health policy, he received community-based participatory research (CBPR)-oriented research training through the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program at the University of Michigan.  He has been the principal investigator on two grants funded through the Department of Defense and NIMH to develop community-based screening and linkage to care interventions for returning Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans.  Justin graduated from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville with a BS in chemistry in 1998 and completed medical school at UAMS in 2002.