eDocAmerica Medical Team

Charles W. Smith, MD

bio-smithCharles W. Smith, M.D., is the Founder, Chairman, and Medical Director of eDocAmerica, and is a board certified family physician with over 40 years of experience in practice.

He is Professor in the Department of Preventive and Family Medicine at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) where he has been serving since 1989. He recently founded Dr. Smith Direct Care, a direct primary care practice located in west Little Rock.  In addition, he serves as the medical director of Poplar Grove, a rehabilitation facility in Little Rock and is medical director for Arkansas Health and Nutrition, a nutritional counseling and weight loss service.  He is a member of the LLC Management Team, a Member of the Quality Management Committee, and a Member of the Editorial Review Team.
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Smith did his medical training at the University of North Carolina and, after practicing in Muscatine, Iowa, became director of resident physician training in Dayton, Ohio at Wright State University. In 1986, he relocated to Huntsville, Alabama, where he served as the chair of family medicine and dean of the School of Primary Medical Care at the University of Alabama in Huntsville a branch of the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He came to Little Rock in 1989 to assume his current position at UAMS.

Joseph A. Banken, Ph.D.

bio-bankenJoseph A. Banken, Ph.D. is a licensed psychologist in Arkansas and Texas with over 15 years of experience in the professional practice of psychology. He has been listed in the National Register for Health Providers of Psychology for over 10 years.

As a psychologist who has worked in a variety of treatment programs including Telehealth, Dr. Banken has treated the majority of behavioral health concerns and illnesses that occur in children and adults. He has a special interest in women’s health issues and substance abuse.
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Dr. Banken continues to conduct an active outpatient practice and has office hours in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences where he is a faculty member in the College of Medicine. Dr. Banken is also an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Psychology at The University of Arkansas at Little Rock. In addition to University responsibilities, he continues clinical research and publication in areas of behavioral health, and serves as a reviewer of a national journal for mental health.

Anita Bennett, MD

bio-bennettDr. Anita Bennett is in private practice at The Family Clinic in Little Rock, AR. She received her undergraduate degree from UCA in Conway, AR. She graduated medical school in 1989 at University Arkansas for Medical Sciences, then completed residency training in Family Medicine at UAMS Department of Family and Community Medicine in 1992.

Dr. Bennett is a Diplomat of the American Board of Family Practice. After completing residency, Dr. Bennett served in a federally funded Community Health Center clinic in Hazen, AR for 5 years prior to entering private practice in Little Rock.


Libbi Calloway RD, LD

bio-callowayLibbi Calloway RD,LD received her BS from Mississippi State University and completed her dietetic internship from UAMS. In December 2010, she will complete her Master’s Degree in Human Nutrition from the University of Alabama. Libbi is registered and licensed in the state of Arkansas.

Libbi works at Arkansas Children’s Hospital where she specializes in inpatient and outpatient care of high risk term and preterm infants. She also enjoys doing research with preterm infants post-discharge from the NICU.


Lois Coulter, Pharm.D., BCPS

bio-coulterDr. Coulter is a graduate from Univ. of Nebraska Medical Center College of Pharmacy in 1990 with a Doctor of Pharmacy Degree. She completed an Ambulatory Care Pharmacy Practice Residency at Wm. S. Middleton Veteran’s Hospital/University of Wisconsin University Hospital in Madison, Wisconsin in June 1991. She was a faculty member, and associate professor, of University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Northwest Arkansas Family Practice Residency Program and the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences College of Pharmacy from July 1991 to Jan 2005.

She joined Washington Regional Medical Center’s Clinical Pharmacy Department in February of 2005 and is a Board Certified Pharmacotherapy Specialist.


Jerome A. Ecker, MD

bio-eckerDr. Ecker is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina. He is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and is licensed to practice in North Carolina and Texas. Dr. Ecker completed his internship and residency in Internal Medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His ties with Texas include an MD from the University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Texas School of Law in Austin. He is a current member of the American Medical Association, American Bar Association, State Bar of Texas, and a Fellow of the American College of Legal Medicine.

Dr. Ecker serves as a consultant to the Texas State Board of Medical Examiners in the area of Quality Assurance and Discipline.
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A native of San Diego, California, Dr. Ecker spent his college-time summer vacations playing with the Santa Maria Indians Baseball Club in Santa Maria, California. He has been published in the legal arena with articles entitled ‘Keys to Effective Litigation’ and ‘Medicaid at the Crossroads,’ and in the medical arena with articles on management of lower GI bleeding and GI complications after lung transplantation. Medical interests include recent advancements in cardiovascular disease, gastrointestinal disorders, and neurologic conditions.

Dr. Ecker is the recipient of the Excellence in Teaching Award from the University of North Carolina Hospitals.


Richard Henry, MD

drhenrypicDr. Richard Henry is in private practice at Eye-Care Surgical Associates in North Little Rock, AR. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville in 1970. He attended the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and graduated with Medical Degree in 1974.

After completing an internship at St.John’s Hospital in Tulsa, OK he did his residency training in ophthalmology at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center in Cincinnati, OH. He completed his residency in 1979. He was board certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology in 1980 and has been a member in good standing with the American Academy of Ophthalmology since 1980. He has practiced comprehensive ophthalmology in private practice since 1980.


Jonell Hudson, Pharm.D., BCPS

bio-HudsonDr. Hudson rejoined the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) and the AHEC-NW Family Medicine residency faculty in September 2009. Prior to returning, she was a clinical pharmacist at Washington Regional Medical Center in Fayetteville, Arkansas providing care to patients in the intensive care unit, critical care unit, and senior health unit. Dr. Hudson received her undergraduate degree at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and completed her Doctor of Pharmacy degree at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock. Her residency training specializing in Primary Care was at the William S. Middleton VA Medical Center in Madison, Wisconsin where she also held an appointment with the Wisconsin School of Pharmacy as a Clinical instructor.
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Following residency training, Dr. Hudson was on faculty at Samford University School of Pharmacy and provided clinical pharmacy services to Medical Center East Family Practice Residency Program in Birmingham, Alabama. During her career, Dr. Hudson has presented lectures and posters at national meetings and given numerous continuing education programs for pharmacists, nurses, and physicians. She has received teaching awards by both the AHEC-NW and the Medical Center East Family Practice Residency Programs. She currently is an Assistant Professor of Pharmacy Practice with UAMS College of Pharmacy located on the newly established Northwest campus and is Board Certified in Pharmacotherapy.

David Rakel, MD

David Rakel David Rakel, associate professor of family medicine in the School of Medicine and Public Health at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is pictured in front of Lake Monona and the skyline of downtown Madison, Wis., on July 16, 2010. Rakel came to UW-Madison in 2001 to start the Integrative Medicine program.

Dr. Rakel started his career near the Teton Mountains in Driggs, Idaho where he was in rural private practice for five years before completing a two-year residential fellowship in integrative medicine at the University of Arizona Health Sciences Center. He is the founder and director of the University of Wisconsin Integrative Medicine Program and associate professor with tenure in the department on family medicine at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health.
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Dr. Rakel is editor of one of the premier texts in this field titled, Integrative Medicine now in its 3rd edition. He is involved in NIH funding to study the placebo effect and to incorporate healing modalities into medical school curricula. He is board certified in family and holistic medicine and sits on the board of the American Board of Integrative Holistic Medicine and is on the executive committee for the Consortium of Academic Health Centers for Integrative Medicine. He has been awarded a number of teaching awards including the Baldwin E. Lloyd clinical teacher award, the UW Department of Family Medicine faculty excellence award, the Marc Hansen lecture award and the resident teacher-of-the-year award. He has a certificate of added qualification in sports medicine and is certified in interactive guided imagery. He enjoys exploring complex systems and developing insight into how each can find a path towards health.

Jose E. Rodriguez, MD

bio-rodriguezDr. Rodriguez is a board certified Family Physician and associate professor of Family Medicine and Rural Health.He is also co-director of the Center for Underrepresented Minorities in Academic Medicine at the Florida State University College of Medicine. His main areas of interest are Minority (especially Latino) health and preparation of the next generation of physicians to care for them.


Joseph E. Scherger, M.D., M.P.H.

bio-schergerJoseph E. Scherger, M.D., M.P.H., is Vice President for Primary Care at Eisenhower Medicine Center in Rancho Mirage, California. Dr. Scherger is Clinical Professor of Family & Preventive Medicine at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine (UCSD). He is also Medical Director for Quality and Informatics at Lumetra. Dr. Scherger’s main focus is on the redesign of office practice using the tools of information technology and quality improvement. Originally from Delphos, Ohio, Dr. Scherger graduated from the University of Dayton in 1971, summa cum laude.

He graduated from the UCLA School of Medicine in 1975, and was elected to Alpha Omega Alpha.
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He completed a Family Medicine Residency at the University of Washington and received a Masters of Public Health from the University of Washington in 1978. From 1978-80, he served in the National Health Service Corps in Dixon, California, as a migrant health physician, before starting his private practice in Dixon. From 1981-92, Dr. Scherger divided his time between private practice and teaching medical students and residents at UC Davis. From 1988-91, he was a Fellow in the Kellogg National Fellowship Program, focusing on health care reform and quality of life. From 1992-1996, he was Vice President for Family Practice and Primary Care Education at Sharp HealthCare in San Diego. From 1996-2001, he was the Chair of the Department of Family Medicine and the Associate Dean for Primary Care at the University of California Irvine, College of Medicine. From 2001-2003, Dr. Scherger served as founding dean of the Florida State University College of Medicine.

Dr. Scherger has received numerous awards, including being recognized as a ‘Top Doc’ in San Diego for 5 consecutive years, 2004-2008. He was voted Outstanding Clinical Instructor at the University of California, Davis School of Medicine in 1984, 1989 and 1990. In 1989, he was Family Physician of the Year by the American Academy of Family Physicians and the California Academy of Family Physicians. In 1986, he was President of the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine. In 1992, Dr. Scherger was elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences. In 1994, he received the Thomas W. Johnson Award for Family Practice Education from the American Academy of Family Physicians. In 2000, he was nominated by the UC Irvine medical students for the AAMC Humanism in Medicine Award. He served on the Institute of Medicine Committee on the Quality of Health Care in America from 1998-2001. Dr. Scherger served on the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Family Physicians and the American Board of Family Medicine.

Dr. Scherger serves on the editorial board of Medical Economics. He is the Men’s Health expert and a consultant for Revolution Health, and he covers California for eDocAmerica. He was Editor-in-Chief of Hippocrates, published by the Massachusetts Medical Society, from 1999-2001. He was the first Medical Editor of Family Practice Management. He has authored more than 300 medical publications and has given over 800 invited presentations.

Dr. Scherger enjoys an active family life with his wife, Carol, and two sons, Adrian and Gabriel. He has completed 24 marathons.


Steven Strode, MD

bio-strodeDr. Strode is also a board certified family physician with 20+ years of experience in practice. Dr. Strode has served as acting chair of the Department of Family Medicine at UAMS and has also served as the president of the Arkansas Academy of Family Physicians.

He is currently Director of the UAMS Telemedicine Program and Medical Director of the UAMS Rural Hospital Program. Dr. Strode shares eDocAmerica coverage responsibilities with Dr. Smith.


Robert L. Tramel, DDS, PLLC

bio-tramelDr. Tramel is married and resides in Little Rock, AR. For 26 years he has maintained a private practice in Family Dentistry in Little Rock where the primary focuses of his practice are preventive dentistry, patient education, aesthetics, and implant restoration.

Dr. Tramel received a BS degree in chemistry from the University of Mississippi in 1977 and a Doctor of Dental Surgery degree from the University of Tennessee Center for the Health Sciences in 1982.

Dr. Tramel’s passions include friends, church, travel, reading, flying and medical brigade trips to service the poor in the country of Honduras.


Daniel J. Van Durme, MD

bio-vandurmeDaniel J. Van Durme, M.D., is Professor and Chair of the Department of Family Medicine and Rural Health at the Florida State University College of Medicine in Tallahassee. He previously spent many years in the Tampa Bay area in both full-time private practice and as a faculty at the University of South Florida (USF) College of Medicine.

Dr. Van Durme is board-certified by the American Board of Family Medicine and has a Certificate of Added Qualifications in Sports Medicine.
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Dr. Van Durme earned his medical degree from the University of South Florida College of Medicine in 1986, completed his family practice residency training in St. Petersburg, Florida, and completed a visiting fellowship in faculty development and geriatrics at East Carolina University. Dr. Van Durme served as team physician for USF football and other intercollegiate sports, and as team physician for the Tampa Bay Lightning in the National Hockey League, the Tampa Bay Storm in the Arena Football League, and the Tampa Bay Mutiny in the Major League Soccer. In addition to sports medicine, he has a strong interest in dermatology and has extensive experience in teaching other physicians about skin conditions, and has published numerous articles and book chapters on skin disorders.

He has been repeatedly chosen by his peers for listing in The Best Doctors in America since 1995 and in Consumers Guide to Top Doctors since 2002. He has also received numerous awards from the University of South Florida College of Medicine including the nomination for the AAMC Humanism in Medicine Award, the Sir William Osler Award for Outstanding Role Model, the Distinguished Professor Award and the Outstanding Advisor Award.

Dr. Van Durme has also served in many leadership capacities including: Trustee of the American Academy of Family Physicians Foundation, the Board of Directors of the Commission on Office Laboratory Accreditation, the American Academy of Family Physicians Board of Directors, the Board of Directors of the National Commission on the Certification of Physician Assistants, and President of the Florida Academy of Family Physicians.


Valerie Hines, MD Pediatrics

Dr Valerie Hines has lived in Chicago since her Pediatric Residency at the University of Illinois in 2005. She was born in Florida and has lived in Belgium and Argentina. She now lives in Chicago with her husband and 3 kids. Enjoys being with her family, working with kids and travelling.

Dr Hines works in a group/hospital based practice in Chicago, is on staff at Ann & Robert H Luries Children’s Hospital and Presence St Joseph Hospital. Works also with students form Feinberg School of Medicine of Northwesten University and Loyola University, enjoys very much teaching in a clinical setting. She is board certified by the American Board of Pediatrics and also certified in Pediatric Advanced Life Support. She has served on many hospital committees, and is the Medical Director for the outpatient pediatric clinic.


Ananth Ranganathan, MD OBGYN

Dr. Ananth Ranganathan grew up in Little Rock, AR. He completed his OBGYN residency in 2015 and joined the Arkansas Women’s Center in June 2019.

Dr. Ranganathan and his wife, Amber, have two sons–Cruz and Nash. When he is not at work, he enjoys date nights with his wife, chasing after his sons, running, playing tennis, and spending time with extended family.

Specialty – Obstetrics and Gynecology, Board Certified


Amber Smith RN, MNSc

Amber grew up in Little Rock, AR. She completed her BSN in 2003 and worked in various parts of the country as a registered nurse for 12 years. In 2015 she finished her Masters in Nursing, specializing in Women’s Health. She practiced for four years as an Advanced Nurse Practitioner in Women’s Health and in 2019, she decided to leave her position in Women’s Health to start a Direct Primary Care Practice in Little Rock. Amber remains in the Direct Primary Care Practice as the Administrator and Clinical nurse overseeing all operations of the practice.

Amber and her husband, Dr. Ananth Ranganathan, have two sons–Cruz and Nash. When she is not at work, she enjoys traveling, cooking, walking and being outdoors, playing tennis, listening to music and podcasts, musical theater, and being with her husband and children.

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