Juan F. Castro, M.D., has been selected as Interim Director of The Texas A&M University System Health Science Center’s South Texas Center (STC) in McAllen, effective immediately. Dr. Castro also serves as director of the Coastal Bend Health Education Center (CBHEC) in Corpus Christi and will divide his time between the centers.
The announcement was made by Nancy W. Dickey, M.D., president of The Texas A&M University System Health Science Center and vice chancellor for health affairs for the A&M System.
Over the past few years, Dr. Castro has worked effectively in the Corpus and Kingsville area to develop many quality programs at CBHEC, including nursing recruitment, diabetes and asthma education programs, and new residency training programs for medical residents. He has built a number of partnerships both with the local community and hospital and health services organizations.
“We want to capitalize on Dr. Castro’s strengths in these and others areas through the development of similar programs in the McAllen and the Lower Rio Grande Valley area,” said Dr. Dickey. “Dr. Castro has already begun meaningful conversations with hospital and medical leaders in McAllen toward beginning a continuing education program for physicians in the area.”
As interim director, Dr. Castro will report directly to Elvin E. Smith, Ph.D., executive vice president of the A&M Health Science Center. He will also work closely with Ciro Sumaya, M.D., M.P.H.T.M., dean of the A&M Health Science Center’s School of Rural Public Health, and with the faculty of that school who are located in McAllen, to facilitate their educational, research and outreach activities in the Valley.
Dr. Castro’s responsibilities are to forge and strengthen relationships with physicians, hospitals, and health care providers; expand the Health Science Center’s educational offerings and recruitment efforts through the South Texas Center, including increased nursing recruitment; initiate continuing medical and health professions education through partnerships with local businesses and hospitals; and facilitate the continued development of community asthma education, nutrition outreach, and diabetes education programs, in addition to other programs beneficial to the Valley.
A family physician, Dr. Castro was born in Mexico and moved to Brownsville at the age of 15 . He obtained a B.A. in Biology in from the University of Texas at Austin and an M.D. from the Texas A&M University System Health Science Center College of Medicine. Previously, Dr. Castro was the assistant medical director of the Brownsville Community Health Center and the founder and director of Family Health Physicians, a six-family physician group in Corpus Christi.
Among several leadership roles, Dr. Castro is past president of the Nueces County Medical Society. He is also a council member of the Medical Education Committee for the Texas Medical Association.
Over the next several months, the A&M Health Science Center will be conducting a search for a permanent director for the STC.
The Texas A&M University System Health Science Center provides the state with health education, outreach and research. Its five components located in communities throughout Texas are Baylor College of Dentistry, the College of Medicine, the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, the Institute of Biosciences and Technology and the School of Rural Public Health.

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