Community hospitals could face medicaid cuts - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Community hospitals could face medicaid cuts

By Crystal Price - bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Gov. Bobby Jindal plans to announce the Executive Budget Friday, February 12th.

Gov. Jindal says this budget will focus on medicaid funding in the state of Louisiana.

The governor says the budget will contain more initiatives that will partner with private sectors because those services can be delivered more cost efficiently.

"You're going to see our efforts on putting emphasis on 'out patient' and primary care and move away from 'in patient' care," said Gov. Jindal. " 

Lake Charles Memorial Hospital is one community hospital that is concerned about the possibility of even deeper cuts.

"We have already begun the process of looking over our programs and our services to try and understand what it is we may not be able to provide for this community in the face of these cuts," said Charles Whitson, the Senior Vice President of Finance for the hospital.

Whitson says that with each reduction comes even tougher financial decisions for the hospital.

"We can't continue to provide needed services to our community in the face of a continual downward pressure on the reimbursement," said Whitson "Sooner or later something has to give."

As the Executive Budget draws near, the Louisiana Hospital Association has launched a public awareness campaign to restore funding back into community hospitals.

"As a part of the backbone of this healthcare system, we feel obligated to bring some type of public awareness to the people that we serve," said Whitson.

The campaign includes a video with compelling facts and images urging all individuals to write their local politician their thoughts on the issue.

"If people don't speak out then we won't have the ability to impact that process," said Whitson.

If you would like for your voice to be heard, LCMH urges you to contact Gov. Jindal at (225) 342-7015 or e-mail him at Bobby.Jindal@la.gov.

To view the public awareness video on medicaid cuts, click on "Medicaid Cuts" to the right.

Copyright 2010 KPLC. All rights reserved.

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