Moss Regional shutting down sickle cell clinic due to budget - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Moss Regional shutting down sickle cell clinic due to budget

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) -

With the $2.3-million dollar cut being made to Moss Regional Hospital, the pediatric and psychiatric clinics will be cut.

The Community and Sickle Cell Advisory Committee met Wednesday, Feb. 1 to discuss the budget issues.

Medical Director Dr. Mohammed Sarwar said because of the budget cuts, the pediatric and psych clinics will close March 1. Once the clinics close, families will have to look elsewhere for this particular care.

Sarwar said the pediatric sickle cell clinic is one of the more unique services at Moss Regional and closing this clinic will affect those who seek medical attention at this clinic.

"It will be a great negative impact on the community kids. I don't know where they're going to go. They might have to travel to Lafayette to see the sickle cell specialist. There are kids who have no insurance, no Medicaid, no doctors, and those kids will be without care," Sarwar said.

The pediatric sickle cell clinic has about 32 patients between the ages of 2 and 20. A special doctor from New Orleans travels to the hospital to treat those patients under the age of 14 with sickle cell anemia. With the closing of the clinic, that service will stop. Sarwar said he hopes the hospital can find someone in the area to help treat those patients.

"Children are our future and if we don't have those services available, that would be a very negative impact on the health of these kids," he said.

Within the coming days, Sarwar said a letter will be sent in the mail to families who will be directly impacted by the closing of these clinics notifying them of the closing and their options.

All rights reserved. KPLC 2012.

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