Monthly Archives: September 2017

Revised Second Quarter GDP Jumps 3.1%

The nation’s economy grew at a solid 3.1% in the second quarter, experiencing the strongest lift in real gross domestic product (GDP) since the first quarter of 2015, according to the “final” estimate released Thursday (Sept. 28) by the U.S. Commerce Department’s Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA).

The third GDP revision was better than the “second” estimate of 3% last month, and the advance forecast of 2.6% in July. The final second quarter spotlight on the U.S. economy is based on more complete source data than was available for the “second” estimate issued last month, BEA officials said.

A year ago, real gross domestic product – the value of the goods and services produced by the nation’s economy less the value of the goods and services used up in production, adjusted for price changes – increased at a modest 2.1% in the second quarter of 2016.   MORE

Arkansas Companies Prep For Manufacturing Day

Arkansas has more than 3,000 manufacturers and many of them are in need of skilled labor to produce their products. Manufacturing Day will be held Oct. 6 across the country, and many manufacturers in the Natural State are conducting programs to let students, business, and community leaders know about job possibilities in the sector.

Andy Capel, the marketing manager for Manufacturing Solutions, an arm of the Arkansas Economic Development Commission, said there will be at least 21 separate celebrations statewide tied to Manufacturing Day.

“It’s a celebration of modern manufacturing … it gets community leaders, students, and others involved,” Capel said. “A lot of people don’t realize the opportunities they have in their own communities.”   MORE

Report: Same-Store Sales For Online Grocery Up 26%

Online grocery purchases comprise about 3.4% of total sales for supermarkets offering the service, but that average is improving to 5.2% for retailers with the service for a minimum of four years, according to a new report from Brick Meets Click. The report indicates same-store sales for online grocery orders grew 26% year-over-year.

Wal-Mart’s expansion of online grocery to more than 1,000 locations this year is fueling that growth. Kroger has also expanded its curbside service and Amazon continues to push more grocery sales. David Bishop, partner at Brick Meets Click, said the strong annual growth indicates e-commerce is becoming an important contributor to supermarket sales.

“This growth in supermarket e-commerce comes just as the online grocery battle between Amazon and Walmart is intensifying,” Bishop said. “The good news is that supermarket e-commerce growth was happening even before Amazon announced their purchase of Whole Foods. The rapid deployment of a number of different Walmart initiatives reveals that the company considers online grocery an important gateway to their e-commerce growth.”   MORE

Lonoke County Traffic Fatality

A motorcycle accident late Thursday night has killed a Lonoke County Man.

Arkansas State Police say 34-year old Jimmy Guess, of Cabot, died when he failed to negotiate a curve on Highway 89 near Olgesby Road leaving the roadway and striking an embankment.

Authorities say the incident happened just before midnight.

Tyson Foods Reducing Corporate Headcount By 450

As fiscal 2017 winds to a close for Springdale-based Tyson Foods, the meat giant is again cutting corporate jobs as part of a stated goal to have a leaner operation while focusing on growing profits.

Tyson Foods corporate layoff rumors have swirled in Northwest Arkansas for several months with company officials declining to comment. But on Thursday (Sept. 28), Tyson Foods confirmed plans to reduce headcount by roughly 450 positions across several areas and at various job levels.

Tyson Foods CEO Tom Hayes said most of the eliminated positions will come from corporate offices in Springdale, Chicago and Cincinnati. No specifics were provided in a news release. Tyson Foods said it will take questions from equity analysts during a conference call Friday morning.   MORE

K&S Furnishings Ribbon Cutting

Now Open, K & S Home Furnishings will host a Ribbon Cutting for their new store on Friday, September 29th at 11:00 a.m. located at 306 W. Race Avenue!

After working in the Furniture business for 30 years the Robersons have realized their dream of opening in Searcy in contribution to downtown revitalization.

They want everyone to feel welcome shopping not only for furniture but for smaller gift related items too.

They strive to offer unique pieces and styles.

UAMS Gets Five-Year Grant Of $4.2 Million

LITTLE ROCK — University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) Regional Campuses has been awarded a five-year grant of $4.2 million for professional education, faculty development and recruitment.

The federal Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Bureau of Health Workforce, Health Careers Pipeline Branch awarded the grant.

The eight Regional Campuses are UAMS Northeast in Jonesboro, UAMS Northwest in Fayetteville/Springdale, UAMS South in Magnolia, UAMS South Central in Pine Bluff, UAMS Southwest in Texarkana, UAMS West in Fort Smith, UAMS East in Helena-West Helena and UAMS North Central in Batesville.

Through its Regional Campuses, UAMS trains medical residents in family medicine while providing clinical care and health education services around the state.

“We’re very excited about this opportunity to better align these strategic initiatives to enhance the health professions training at our regional campuses,” said Mark T. Jansen, M.D., medical director for Regional Campuses. “We understand that the best care for Arkansas will require coordinating the efforts of all medical providers — physicians, nurse practitioners, pharmacists, nurses, physician assistants and others. We will come together from all over the state, train as a team and go back out into the entire state to provide exemplary care for all Arkansans.”

This funding will support enhanced regional recruitment efforts for high-school and college-level students through a new scholars program; expansion of partnerships with community health centers and other potential clinical training sites; and full integration of behavioral health and interprofessional education into clinical and education processes.

“If you ignore the behavioral health, the collective cost of care goes up by a factor of three,” Jansen said. “Behavioral illnesses affect patients’ participation in treatment goals. Care delivery is not going to be what it would be otherwise. Rather than putting it off to the side, we will now deal with these issues right away along with everything else.”

Regional Campuses’ new statewide behavioral health director will assess, develop, implement and evaluate these new initiatives that are integrated into treatment plans. A curriculum educator and evaluator will be hired to serve as a central coordinator to work closely with the UAMS Office of interprofessional education and the Center for Distance Health.

Other areas given renewed focus by the grant include:

  • Social determinants of health — addressing a lack of health insurance, education and transportation that may affect a patient’s ability to participate in their own care.
  • Cultural competency — increasing the ability to understand and communicate clearly with patients from other countries or cultures on their own terms.
  • Health literacy — using plain language to educate patients about their care and health.
  • Population health — determining best practices for groups of individuals who share common diagnoses.
  • Practice transformation — educating residents and faculty about quality improvements and payment reforms that are changing compensation and insurer expectations for physicians.

UAMS is the state’s only health sciences university, with colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Health Professions and Public Health; a graduate school; a hospital; a northwest Arkansas regional campus; a statewide network of regional centers; and seven institutes: the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, the Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, the Myeloma Institute, the Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, the Psychiatric Research Institute, the Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging and the Translational Research Institute. It is the only adult Level 1 trauma center in the state. UAMS has 2,870 students, 799 medical residents and six dental residents. It is the state’s largest public employer with more than 10,000 employees, including about 1,200 physicians who provide care to patients at UAMS and its regional campuses throughout the state, Arkansas Children’s Hospital, the VA Medical Center and Baptist Health. Visit or Find us on FacebookTwitterYouTubeor Instagram.

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