Modern Healthcare - - REGIONAL NEWS -

— A pri­vate op­er­a­tor has agreed to run the Louisiana State Univer­sity hospi­tal in Lake Charles that cares for the unin­sured, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jin­dal’s ad­min­is­tra­tion an­nounced. The agree­ment is part of the ad­min­is­tra­tion’s ef­forts to move away from a univer­sity-run pub­lic hospi­tal sys­tem. The De­part­ment of Health & Hos­pi­tals said man­age­ment of LSU’s Moss Re­gional Med­i­cal Cen­ter will be turned over to Lake Charles Me­mo­rial Hospi­tal and West Cal­casieu Cameron Hospi­tal, Sulpher, La. The ar­range­ment, ac­cord­ing to DHH, is sim­i­lar to pri­va­ti­za­tion plans for the op­er­a­tions of LSU’s hos­pi­tals in Ba­ton Rouge, Houma, Lafayette and New Or­leans. DHH and LSU of­fi­cials didn’t pro­vide a copy of the agree­ment that has been signed with the pri­vate hos­pi­tals. DHH said Lake Charles Me­mo­rial Hospi­tal will make lease pay­ments to the state. The money will be used to draw down fed­eral dol­lars to pay for ser­vices. West Cal­casieu Cameron Hospi­tal will then sub­lease part of the prop­erty from Lake Charles Me­mo­rial Hospi­tal. The health de­part­ment said the pri­va­ti­za­tion plans will shrink state costs, while main­tain­ing health ser­vices and grad­u­ate med­i­cal ed­u­ca­tion pro­grams. The Jin­dal ad­min­is­tra­tion also is seek­ing pri­vate man­agers for the univer­sity sys­tem’s other hos­pi­tals. Jin­dal stripped more than $300 mil­lion in state and fed­eral fund­ing for the LSU health sys­tem af­ter Louisiana’s Med­i­caid fi­nanc­ing was re­duced by Congress. Thou­sands of work­ers at the LSU health fa­cil­i­ties will face lay­offs un­der the plans and will have to reap­ply for their jobs with the pri­vate hospi­tal op­er­a­tors. LSU board mem­bers have said they hope to move the univer­sity sys­tem out of the hospi­tal busi­ness and re­turn the fo­cus to ed­u­ca­tion.

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