Arkansas Health

Six researchers are laying out details of how they plan to study the causes of childhood obesity. The Center for Childhood Obesity Prevention at the Arkansas Children’s Research Institute announced its first round of projects Wednesday.

Created last year through a $9.4 million grant from the National Institutes of Health, the Center for Childhood Obesity Prevention seeks to address all levels of the issues surrounding overweight kids.

pediatric exercise science lab at the Arkansas Children's Research Institute
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

The Arkansas Children’s Nutrition Center on Tuesday unveiled an exercise science lab designed to help researchers better understand how physical activity promotes better health. Officials say it’s only the second such facility in the nation.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson joined officials inside the lab, which is equipped with treadmills and other equipment, to mark the opening. Hundreds of children from a broad range of backgrounds will take part in the research, said the center’s Director Sean Adams.

Daniel Breen / KUAR News

Potential operators of medical marijuana cultivation facilities and dispensaries came together at a half-day symposium in Little Rock Wednesday to discuss their expectations of what the new industry will be like.

Among the attendees was TV host Montel Williams, who gave the keynote address at the event organized by the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Association. Williams has multiple sclerosis, and has long advocated for medicinal cannabis use. His visit had added significance, since he recently accepted a position on the association’s board.

Arkansas Department of Health
Arkansas Department of Health

Arkansas health officials say a mumps outbreak has ended in the state after infecting nearly 3,000 people.

The Arkansas Department of Health says the last confirmed case in the state was on July 13.

The outbreak began in August 2016 and during the following 12 months, the health department confirmed 2,954 cases statewide.

The department says there are fewer than 10 cases of mumps in a typical year in Arkansas.

npr.org

Arkansans affected by the opioid epidemic can now receive life-saving treatment over-the-counter at pharmacies. Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced the creation of the state’s Naloxone Standing Protocol alongside state healthcare officials at a press conference Wednesday.

National Fallen Firefighters Foundation

One in four first responders in Arkansas have PTSD, moderate to severe anxiety disorder, or are at high risk for suicide, according to a statewide study currently underway surveying the state's firefighters and paramedics. 

CDC, National Vital Statistics System

The politics of public health will be at play as Arkansas moves forward with studying pregnancy-related deaths.

Arkansas has the third-highest rate of women who die during pregnancy or delivery, according to the United Health Foundation. This has prompted a study into the matter.

Arkansas State Police will distribute two canisters of the nasal spray Narcan to troopers so they can revive a drug addict suffering from an opioid overdose.  The drug blocks the effects of overdose, which otherwise would slow and eventually stop the person’s breathing.

Having the antidote in the hands of first responders may be particularly helpful in rural parts of the state, according to spokesperson Bill Sadler.

npr.org

As Arkansas continues to combat the problem that has earned it the title of “most obese state in the country”, a weight-loss group is gearing up for its international conference in Little Rock, beginning this Friday, July 13.

TOPS, or Take Off Pounds Sensibly, is a non-profit network of weight-loss support groups, and has about 125,000 members throughout the United States and Canada; roughly 2,000 of whom will attend their worldwide conference in Little Rock.

New Arkansas Drug Director Named

Jul 12, 2017
bentonproud.com

Governor Asa Hutchinson has named a new state drug czar. On Wednesday Hutchinson announced that Benton Police Chief Kirk Lane would assume the role of State Drug Director. Lane succeeds Denny Altes who resigned in May.

In a press release, Hutchinson says Lane’s background with the FBI and law enforcement “equipped him well to serve in the role.”

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