Arkansas Health

Arkansas Senate

An Arkansas Senate committee voted to advance a series of bills Monday concerning medical practice in the state.

By a vote of 5-2 on each, the Senate Public Health, Welfare and Labor committee advanced two "scope of practice," bills to the full Senate.

Arkansas’s Republican Governor says President Donald Trump should begin the transition process to the administration of president-elect Joe Biden.

Speaking on NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday, Gov. Asa Hutchinson said he expects Biden to be the next president of the United States.

Did you know that engagement in regular physical activity is one of the best things you can do for your overall health? Well it is!

There are many benefits when engaging in regular physical activity. For example, according to the Centers for Disease Control, the benefits include improved brain health, weight management, reduced risk of disease, stronger and healthier bones and muscles, overall improvement in your ability to engage in day to day routine activities, and it also proves to be beneficial to increasing your overall quality of healthy life.

We are all subject to stressful moments in life and living during a pandemic can cause extra stress. Did you know that stress can negatively impact your body? It can!

Here are a few tips that can help you reduce and manage stress:

COVID-19 has impacted lives globally. The mortality of this disease is alarming, even in the state of Arkansas.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death globally, and for men and women in the United States. This means that many of us in Arkansas could be at risk.

So how can we reduce our risk of heart disease? First, know the medical conditions and behaviors that increase risk of heart disease including: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoking, obesity, lack of engagement in physical activity, diabetes, alcohol consumption, and unhealthy eating habits.

Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects thought processes, feelings, and behavior.

Rural communities report higher rates of obesity, and Arkansas is overwhelmingly a rural state.

Obesity increases risk of heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and cancer. But obesity is either preventable, or modifiable. It's never too late to adopt a healthy diet and engage in physical activity. Pack your lunch instead of eating fast food, make water your main beverage, snack on fresh fruit & veggies, make exercise a priority even if it is just a daily walk. If your neighborhood doesn’t have sidewalks consider a trail, or community park.


For the first time ever, a group of researchers has published a set of evidence-based medical care guidelines for adults living with the most common genetic disorder in humans.

The group of 13 researchers, physicians and social workers from across the country published the guidelines for adults living with Down syndrome in conjunction with the Global Down Syndrome Foundation.


The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences is launching a new telehealth service to provide HIV prevention drugs to at-risk Arkansans.

The Digital Health HIV Prevention program is part of the UAMS HealthNow system which provides urgent care and other medical services through virtual visits to a doctor’s office.

Stacy Petty is an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse and directs UAMS HealthNow. She says the service is completely digital, except for lab testing that must be completed before each visit every three months.

University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences UAMS
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

Some doctors and hospitals have adopted new practices to encourage women in Arkansas to get breast cancer screenings. Dr. Ronda S. Henry-Tillman, a breast cancer surgeon at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, says fewer women are getting checked since Gov. Asa Hutchinson issued a directive on April 3 banning elective medical procedures amid the coronavirus pandemic.


A researcher with the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences will use a $1.7 million grant to find new ways to treat a deadly blood disorder.

The grant from the National Cancer Institute is going to Dr. Jesus Delgado-Calle, assistant professor of physiology and biophysics at UAMS, who is studying ways to improve bone health to prevent or delay relapses in patients with multiple myeloma.

September is National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month in Arkansas. Data shows fewer men are getting regular prostate screenings, likely due to the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s a concern for health officials because if detected early, prostate cancer is survivable.

University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

People suffering from anxiety or depression have a new resource available in the form of new technology, according to a research study by the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. The study says a group of apps, usable on most smartphones, achieved significant improvements in the mental health of primary care patients.  

Dr. Carolyn Greene, an associate professor at UAMS and the project's lead scientist, says the goal was to provide the public with something effective and easy to use.

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The South Central Telehealth Resource Center has received over $800,000 in federal funding to expand its efforts in telehealth education.

The center, housed at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, but a part of the National Consortium of Telehealth Resource Centers, received $825,000 from the Health Resources and Services Administration as a part of the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relieve and Economic Security or CARES Act. 

U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention

The coronavirus pandemic has made physical health a priority for communities across the country. While social distancing is key in the fight to control the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, decreased social contact and significant changes to everyday life bring another priority for health professionals to respond to: mental health. 

Humans are social animals and seek interactions with others. With the onset of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s social distancing guidelines, normal interactions have become more difficult.  

Federal Funds To Aid Little Rock Renters, First Responders

Apr 9, 2020
Frank Scott Jr.
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

The City of Little Rock now has almost $2 million in federal grant money to help with the city’s COVID-19 response. Two federal programs contributed to the grant award, which will help fund the city’s Emergency Management Division and the Department of Housing and Neighborhood Programs. 

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, signed into law by President Donald Trump late last month, awarded the city’s Housing and Neighborhood Programs department over $960,000. Almost $880,000 of those funds will go to the city’s Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program. 

Governor's Office / YouTube

Four weeks after the first confirmed case of the coronavirus was identified in Arkansas, 1,023 people in the state have tested positive for the virus. Gov. Asa Hutchinson made the announcement Wednesday, noting there were 77 additional cases over the previous 24 hours.

Daniel Breen / KUAR News

The death toll from COVID-19 in Arkansas rose to eight Tuesday, with the total number of coronavirus cases at 523.

This comes as state health officials and Gov. Asa Hutchinson say the state’s efforts at "flattening the curve" through social distancing appear to be working.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson listens as Arkansas Department of Health Secretary Nate Smith speaks to reporters Monday.
Governor's Office / YouTube

Arkansas has had another death from COVID-19, officials announced Monday, bringing the total in the state to seven. Department of Health Secretary Nate Smith said the person was over the age of 65 and is the first death connected to a nursing home. He said Arkansas was up to 473 positive cases, an increase of 47 from Sunday.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced Monday that he is allocating an additional $45 million to aid in the purchase of personal protective equipment and ventilators. An original allocation of $30 million wasn’t enough, he said.

Governor's Office / YouTube

The number of COVID-19 deaths in Arkansas rose from three to five as of Saturday, with Gov. Asa Hutchinson expressing frustration about supply chain issues that are limiting testing for the pandemic that continues to spread globally. He also said the number of weekly jobless applications in the past week totaled more than 30,000, which followed about 9,400 applications in the prior week.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson signs legislation creating COVID-19 Rainy Day Fund into law just before 1 a.m. Saturday.
Governor's Office / YouTube

The first extraordinary session of the 92nd General Assembly was rather ordinary in its business, but extraordinary in its setting.

Arkansas lawmakers wrapped up a three-day special session to create a COVID-19 Rainy Day Fund. The funding mechanism will collect money from a variety of surplus and discretionary state accounts and be available to handle special money from the federal government, if necessary.

Nate Smith COVID-19 Asa Hutchinson
Governor's Office / YouTube

Arkansas was up to 384 positive cases of coronavirus as of 5 p.m. Friday, according to the state Department of Health. Gov. Asa Hutchinson said during an afternoon press briefing that projections suggest that number could increase to 2,000 cases by next weekend and 3,500 in two weeks.

"This is modeling that’s based upon what’s happened in other states, what the experts tell us. It doesn’t mean it has to happen in Arkansas, but those are the kinds of projections that we’re trying to anticipate," Hutchinson said.

Nate Smith COVID-19
Governor's Office / YouTube

Seeming frustrated by reports that some people in Arkansas are not abiding by social distancing recommendations, Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced Wednesday he is issuing a directive that will give law enforcement the power to enforce limits on gatherings.

The state has recommended people avoid indoor social gatherings of more than 10 people and keep a distance of six feet between one another during the current health crisis.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson (at the podium) announcing Sunday that the number of COVID-19 cases in Arkansas had risen to 165.
Governor's Office / YouTube

165 people in Arkansas have tested positive for COVID-19, Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced Sunday, an increase of 47 cases from Saturday. With testing being expanded this week, officials are warning the number will continue to rise.

44 of the cases involved people at three nursing homes in the state, according to Secretary of Health Dr. Nate Smith. Seniors and people with underlying health conditions are most at risk from the virus.

Arkansas Department of Health Director Nathaniel Smith and Gov. Asa Hutchinson speak to reporters Wednesday about the first presumptive case of the coronavirus reported in the state.
Governor's Office / YouTube

The number of coronavirus cases in Arkansas has risen to 30 and includes the first person one in the northwest corner of the state. 

The Department of Health announced the eight new cases on its website Wednesday.

Mike Preston
Governor's Office / YouTube

Arkansas has not had a new positive case of COVID-19 reported over the last 24 hours, Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced mid-morning Tuesday. It's the first day since state officials began conducting daily briefings last Wednesday that there has not been an uptick in diagnosed cases, with the number standing at 22.

But with testing for the virus ramping up, he expects the number will rise.

COVID-19 Education Secretary Johnny Key
Governor's Office / YouTube

Gov. Asa Hutchinson is ordering all Arkansas schools to be closed starting Tuesday, continuing through the end of the week, to try and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Speaking Sunday alongside health and education officials, he also announced four new cases have been confirmed, bringing the total in the state to 16. 

UAMS covid-19 coronavirus
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

The number of COVID-19 cases in Arkansas has risen to 12, Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced Saturday. The three new cases are healthcare workers at Jefferson Regional Medical Center and related to the original case discovered in Pine Bluff.

Hutchinson also said during Saturday’s press conference that he has authorized the Arkansas National Guard to be activated to help with logistics, call center support, transportation, EMT support and other needs.

Governor Asa Hutchinson Greg Bledsoe Coronavirus
Daniel Breen / KUAR News

Gov. Asa Hutchinson says three more people in Arkansas are presumed to have tested positive for the coronavirus, bringing the total number of presumptive cases in the state to nine.

In a news conference at the Arkansas Department of Health Friday, Hutchinson said one case indicates the first instance of community spread of the virus in the state, in Little Rock.