Arkansas Health

State Officials Release Plan For Healthier Arkansas

Oct 15, 2015
Governor Asa Hutchinson Healthy Active Arkansas
Chris Hickey / KUAR News

A new ten-year plan to encourage Arkansans to get healthier is pooling the resources of public and private entities in order to combat rising obesity in the state. Governor Asa Hutchinson and other public health advocates and officials revealed the initiative Wednesday.

The “Healthy Active Arkansas” plan introduces a framework to encourage access to more nutritional food options in schools and public facilities, as well as access to spaces in which to exercise.


Flu Shot
Carmichael Yepez / U.S. Navy

The Arkansas Department of Health is announcing plans to provide flu vaccines statewide in preparation for the 2015-16 flu season.

The department says each county health unit in the state will be hosting mass flu vaccine clinics during October and in November. The clinics are typically a daylong event when the health unit and community volunteers provide flu vaccine to as many people as possible.

A long-awaited health care reform report by a consultant hired by a state legislative task force has been delivered to the Bureau of Legislative Research, but it won’t be released publicly until next Wednesday (Oct. 7).

Rep. Charlie Collins, R-Fayetteville, the chairman of the Health Reform Legislative Task Force, said Thursday The Stephen Group delivered its report as expected on deadline day, Oct. 1. The Bureau of Legislative Research will produce hard copies of the report and open a room at the Capitol next Monday and Tuesday for legislative members to review it there.

The U.S. Department of Labor has awarded Arkansas a grant of up to $2.3 million to create temporary jobs for cleanup and recovery in areas affected by floods and storms earlier this year.

The Arkansas Department of Workforce Services says the grant will support recovery efforts in 28 Arkansas counties that were hit with severe storms, tornadoes, powerful winds and flooding from May 7 through June 15.

Jacksonville resident Randy Dollar found out his Medicaid was cancelled in a hospital preparing for open-heart surgery.
Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

A rally at the state Capitol on Wednesday tried to drive home the message that Arkansas’s beleaguered Medicaid verification process is resulting in some very real physical pain for low-income Arkansans.

sports injuries football

The Little Rock School District and Arkansas Children’s Hospital are partnering to place an athletic trainer every public high school in the city. Officials say the goal of the agreement is to have adequate medical for all high school athletes.

Parkview basketball player, Morgan Brady, who will be a junior this school year, welcomes the news. In previous years, she says, her team did not get much attention.

Arkansas Department of Health
Arkansas Department of Health

Arkansas is ending a program that provides home health care to thousands of people, a move that will affect more than 2,300 state workers and contractors.

Arkansas Department of Health Director Nathaniel Smith told the employees and contractors working for the In Home Services program in a letter dated Monday that the agency decided the program was no longer sustainable.

Smith's letter cites financial constraints and private sector competition, and said finding private providers for those on the state program will take at least six months.

Arkansas Nuclear One Entergy power plant

Arkansas’s top elected officials, all Republicans, are roundly denouncing the finalized Clean Power Plan announced Monday by President Barack Obama’s administration as an expensive overreach of authority, while health and environmental advocates are praising the Environmental Protection Agency rule as a needed step to combat climate change and adverse health impacts tied to coal energy production. Meanwhile, the state's governor is calling for a plan of compliance to be developed despite his opposition to the federal rule.

The Ronald McDonald House Charities of Arkansas broke ground on a new $8.5 million housing facility on the campus of Arkansas Children’s Hospital on Tuesday.

The new facility, which houses families of sick patients at the pediatric hospital, will triple in size.

To date, roughly $7.5 million has been raised towards the $8.5 million goal. On Tuesday, Tyson Foods contributed $500,000 and announced it would stock the kitchen pantry of the House for a full year.

The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff has received initial approval for its pre-licensure nursing program from the Arkansas State Board of Nursing.

The school announced that enrollment in the program will be open for the upcoming 2015-2016 school year and prospective students who have completed the required prerequisite general education courses can submit applications.

School officials say the addition of the nursing program is among the recent academic improvements it has made within the past year on campus.