Despite Louisiana law prohibiting closure of LSU hospitals without legislative approval, Huey P. Long doctors testify that the hospital has already effectively closed; SCR 48 up for debate in full La. House Wed. May 14

Senate Concurrent Resolution 48 squeaked out of the Louisiana House Health and Welfare Committee Tuesday May 6 by a 10-8 vote. Voting for SCR 48, which will result in the permanent closure of the Huey P. Long Medical Center in Pineville were state representatives:

  • Simon [Health & Welfare Committee Chair]
  • Hoffmann [Health & Welfare Committee Vice Chair]
  • Burford
  • Harris
  • Hensgens
  • Hill
  • “Jay” Morris
  • Pope
  • Stokes
  • Whitney

All but Hill are Republicans. Voting against SCR 48 / Huey P. Long’s closure were:

  • Barrow
  • Cox
  • Franklin
  • Havard
  • Jackson
  • LeBas
  • Patrick Williams
  • Wilmott

Havard and Wilmott are Republicans, and the rest, plus Hill are Democrats.

 

May 6, 2014 House H&W Video link

 

Though SCR 48 was like its predecessors in Lake Charles and Baton Rouge set for near certain passage, even with the near domination of Health and Welfare Committee time and unlimited / uninterrupted testimony by SCR 48 supporters, riveting testimony by opponents of Huey P. Long Medical Center’s closure confirmed that  the Charity system hospital’s operator LSU and the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals DHH has already effectively closed the hospital. Two courageous Huey P. Long physicians in particular testified that they had been ordered by LSU not to admit new patients, effective February 28. Further, this led to Tulane University Medical Center March 30 to end its largest medical residency rotation outside of the New Orleans area.

 

LSU officials queried about the actual operative status of the hospital hemmed and hawed when asked point-blank whether the hospital was effectively closed. And by the time the two Huey P. Long physicians testified as well as others (including yours truly) — witness testimony was severely curtailed by Health and Welfare Committee Chairman Scott Simon, leading Committee member Representative Katrina Jackson (D-Monroe) to protest the violation of House rules for Simon’s disproportionate favor of SCR 48 proponents testimony over opponents.

 

Louisiana Revised Statute 17:1518.1 (F) stipulates:

F.  Neither the Huey P. Long Medical Center nor the emergency room shall be closed without legislative approval.  The health sciences center shall not authorize the Huey P. Long Medical Center to reduce health care services provided by the facility in any manner that causes annual expenditures for the facility to be reduced on an annualized basis by greater than thirty-five percent of the previous year actual spending level.  Funding may be provided by any local, regional, state, federal, or private sources to augment existing funding or to restore reduced funding.  Legislative approval may be granted by either concurrent resolution or other appropriate legislative action in an appropriation act.

 

Perhaps it was expected SCR 48 would pass. Nevertheless the 10-8 vote indicates that despite the full-court press for privatization of Louisiana’s public Charity Hospital system, significant questions as to the probity of the Jindal administration (and its LSU puppets) in even upholding state law are flaring hotter.

 

SCR 48 has been scheduled for full House debate Wednesday May 14. In our next post, Defend Louisiana Public Healthcare will suggest that with a redoubled effort Louisiana House members can put a monkey wrench into Governor Jindal’s prurient quest to dismantle Louisiana’s iconic Charity Hospital system (a quest that is readily apparent set to not only wreck the state budget and even break the law to accomplish).

 

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Urgent: SCR 48 to close Huey P. Long Medical Center to be considered Tuesday May 6

SCR 48 up for consideration Tuesday May 6 in House Health and Welfare (9:00am, HCR 5, Louisiana Capitol, Baton Rouge)

Contact members of the Louisiana House Health and Welfare Committee to OPPOSE THE PASSAGE OF SCR 48!

Demand that Huey P. Long Medical Center REMAIN OPEN AS A PUBLIC HOSPITAL!

Demand that Huey P. Long Medical Center OUTPATIENT CLINICS BE OPEN AND FULLY FUNCTIONAL IN PERMANENT BUILDINGS!

Oppose the Abandonment of Central Louisiana’s Poor and Uninsured!

Senate Concurrent Resolution 48, authored by Louisiana State Senator Gerald Long, proposes to complete the devastating privatization of Louisiana’s Charity Hospital system by permanently closing its central Louisiana flagship: The Huey P. Long Medical Center. What’s more, SCR 48 proposes this closure BEFORE PROMISED OUTPATIENT CLINICS ARE FULLY CONSTRUCTED AND OPENED! Coupled with Governor Jindal’s refusal to expand Medicaid under the federal Affordable Care Act, the closure of Huey P. Long will leave central Louisiana’s medically indigent without access to safety net healthcare.

And with the CMS decision to reject federal financial participation in Governor Jindal’s Charity Hospital system privatization scheme, it is vital to retain healthcare services that have already received CMS approval such as Huey P. Long Medical Center.

Say NO to SCR 48! Contact Health & Welfare members NOW to vote NO!

Members of the Louisiana House Health and Welfare Committee:

Scott M. Simon [Committee Chair] (R-Abita Springs, Dist. 74): (985) 893-6246 / simons@legis.la.gov

Frank A. Hoffmann [Vice Chair] (R-West Monroe, Dist. 15): (318) 362-4130 / hoffmanf@legis.la.gov

John F. “Andy” Anders (D-Vidalia, Dist. 21): (318) 336-5865 / larep021@legis.la.gov

Regina Ashford Barrow (D-Baton Rouge, Dist. 29): (225) 359-9400 / larep029@legis.la.gov

Richard T. Burford (R-Stonewall, Dist. 7): (318) 925-9588 / burfordr@legis.la.gov

Kenny R. Cox (D-Natchitoches, Dist. 23): (855) 844-8583 / coxk@legis.la.gov

A.B. Franklin (D-Lake Charles, Dist. 34): (337) 491-2320 / franklina@legis.la.gov

Lance Harris (R-Alexandria, Dist. 25): (318) 767-6095 / harrisl@legis.la.gov

Kenneth E. Havard (R-Jackson, Dist. 62): (225) 634-7470 / havardk@legis.la.gov

Bob Hensgens (R-Abbeville, Dist. 47): (337) 893-5035 / hensgensb@legis.la.gov

Dorothy Sue Hill (D-Dry Creek, Dist. 32): (800) 259-2118 / hilld@legis.la.gov

Katrina R. Jackson (D-Monroe, Dist. 16): (318) 362-5123 / jacksonk@legis.la.gov

H. Bernard LeBas (D-Ville Platte, Dist. 38): (337) 363-0152 / lebasb@legis.la.gov

John C. “Jay” Morris (R-Monroe, Dist. 14): (318) 362-4270 / morrisjc@legis.la.gov

J. Rogers Pope (R-Denham Springs, Dist. 71): (225) 667-3588 / poper@legis.la.gov

Julie Stokes (R-Kenner, Dist. 79): (504) 468-8603 / stokesj@legis.la.gov

Lenar L. Whitney (R-Houma, Dist. 53): (985) 858-2970 / whitneyl@legis.la.gov

Patrick Williams (D-Shreveport, Dist. 4): (318) 676-5990 / larep004@legis.la.gov

Thomas P. Wilmott (R-Kenner, Dist. 92): (504) 465-3479 / willmott@legis.la.gov

Chuck Kleckley [Ex-Officio] (R-Lake Charles, Dist. 36): (337) 475-3016 / larep036@legis.la.gov

Walt Leger, III [Ex-Officio] (D-New Orleans, Dist. 91): (504) 556-9970 / legerw@legis.la.gov

Louisiana Voice: CMS rejects hospital privatization plan leaving $300M hole in 2015 budget and immediate $70M shortfall for higher ed

Tom Aswell told us long ago about this disastrous privatization scheme — And in his latest Louisiana Voice blog post, he says much more than just “we told you so. Several times.” —

 

The Louisiana Voice: CMS rejects hospital privatization plan leaving $300 M hole in 2015 budget and immediate $70M shortfall for higher ed

 

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The Big Charity Film kickstarter campaign to raise $36,000 by May 23rd is almost to its ambitious goal! They have raised over $33,000 with 19 days left to go! Please join me and over 300 other donors in guaranteeing that this film receives wide release.

La. Capitol Vigil May 1st for Medicaid Expansion; Oppose SCR 48 and the closure of Huey P. Long Medical Center

After a long absence, Defend Louisiana Public Healthcare blog has returned. Please share this post with a friend — and elect to “follow” us by clicking the tab at the bottom right side of the page and subscribe!

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Thursday May 1, 2014, 6:00pm Candlelight Vigil: Dying for Coverage, Healthcare Saves Lives, Louisiana State Capitol Steps, Baton Rouge. Go to the Campaign for Healthcare for Everyone Louisiana website or contact Alma Stewart at alma@lahealthequity.org.

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Contact members of the Louisiana House Health and Welfare Committee to OPPOSE THE PASSAGE OF SCR 48!

Demand that Huey P. Long Medical Center REMAIN OPEN AS A PUBLIC HOSPITAL!

Demand that Huey P. Long Medical Center OUTPATIENT CLINICS BE OPEN AND FULLY FUNCTIONAL IN PERMANENT BUILDINGS!

Oppose the Abandonment of Central Louisiana’s Poor and Uninsured!

Senate Concurrent Resolution 48, authored by Louisiana State Senator Gerald Long, proposes to complete the devastating privatization of Louisiana’s Charity Hospital system by permanently closing its central Louisiana flagship: The Huey P. Long Medical Center. What’s more, SCR 48 proposes this closure BEFORE PROMISED OUTPATIENT CLINICS ARE FULLY CONSTRUCTED AND OPENED! Coupled with Governor Jindal’s refusal to expand Medicaid under the federal Affordable Care Act, the closure of Huey P. Long will leave central Louisiana’s medically indigent without access to safety net healthcare!

Say NO to SCR 48! Contact Health & Welfare members NOW to vote NO!

Members of the Louisiana House Health and Welfare Committee:

Scott M. Simon [Committee Chair] (R-Abita Springs, Dist. 74): (985) 893-6246 / simons@legis.la.gov

Frank A. Hoffmann [Vice Chair] (R-West Monroe, Dist. 15): (318) 362-4130 / hoffmanf@legis.la.gov

John F. “Andy” Anders (D-Vidalia, Dist. 21): (318) 336-5865 / larep021@legis.la.gov

Regina Ashford Barrow (D-Baton Rouge, Dist. 29): (225) 359-9400 / larep029@legis.la.gov

Richard T. Burford (R-Stonewall, Dist. 7): (318) 925-9588 / burfordr@legis.la.gov

Kenny R. Cox (D-Natchitoches, Dist. 23): (855) 844-8583 / coxk@legis.la.gov

A.B. Franklin (D-Lake Charles, Dist. 34): (337) 491-2320 / franklina@legis.la.gov

Lance Harris (R-Alexandria, Dist. 25): (318) 767-6095 / harrisl@legis.la.gov

Kenneth E. Havard (R-Jackson, Dist. 62): (225) 634-7470 / havardk@legis.la.gov

Bob Hensgens (R-Abbeville, Dist. 47): (337) 893-5035 / hensgensb@legis.la.gov

Dorothy Sue Hill (D-Dry Creek, Dist. 32): (800) 259-2118 / hilld@legis.la.gov

Katrina R. Jackson (D-Monroe, Dist. 16): (318) 362-5123 / jacksonk@legis.la.gov

H. Bernard LaBas (D-Ville Platte, Dist. 38): (337) 363-0152 / labasb@legis.la.gov

John C. “Jay” Morris (R-Monroe, Dist. 14): (318) 362-4270 / morrisjc@legis.la.gov

J. Rogers Pope (R-Denham Springs, Dist. 71): (225) 667-3588 / poper@legis.la.gov

Julie Stokes (R-Kenner, Dist. 79): (504) 468-8603 / stokesj@legis.la.gov

Lenar L. Whitney (R-Houma, Dist. 53): (985) 858-2970 / whitneyl@legis.la.gov

Patrick Williams (D-Shreveport, Dist. 4): (318) 676-5990 / larep004@legis.la.gov

Thomas P. Wilmott (R-Kenner, Dist. 92): (504) 465-3479 / willmott@legis.la.gov

Chuck Kleckley [Ex-Officio] (R-Lake Charles, Dist. 36): (337) 475-3016 / larep036@legis.la.gov

Walt Leger, III [Ex-Officio] (D-New Orleans, Dist. 91): (504) 556-9970 / legerw@legis.la.gov

Though the veto override session failed — Let’s build for a special session to undo Jindal’s privatization of Louisiana public healthcare

Though coming closer than any previous attempt, advocates for a veto override session of the Louisiana State Legislature were thwarted  July 12 in their quest to overturn Governor Bobby Jindal’s vetoes of funding for the developmentally disabled and other human service programs. While the Louisiana House approved the veto session, 26 of 39 Louisiana State Senators returned ballots opposing the veto session.

We of Advocates for Louisiana Public Healthcare join Override the Veto advocates to announce that our efforts are not over. Indeed, with the revelations that the private firm that took over operations of the Southeast Louisiana Hospital will lose federal funding due to profound deficiencies in providing mental healthcare, it will be only a matter of time before Jindal’s privatization scheme will be brought forth into serious question.

Reflecting on the results of this override the veto effort, advocates at least achieved registering more than one-third of the Louisiana Senate in our quest — signaling potential for rekindling another a special legislative session attempt.

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July 12, 2013, WWL-TV: State cuts impact families who care for relatives with disabilities

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Louisiana Voice / Tom Aswell: Another Jindal Swindle in trouble: SELH, aka Northlake, loses Medicare eligibility nine months after privatization

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July 12, 2013, The News Star: Conway employees wait with anxiety about their future

 

Sign the petition to overturn Governor Jindal’s veto of vital children’s health services; support for a special legislative session

Advocates for Louisiana Public Healthcare supports this call to action for a Special Louisiana Legislative Session (though we need to expand such a call to also include reconsideration of the LSU Charity Hospital privatizations).
As a first step please sign the petition to support a special session to restore funds for individuals with disabilities to the state’s budget. On Friday, June 21, 2013, Governor Bobby Jindal line item vetoed funds for:
Individual and Family Support
Families Helping Families Resource Centers
Children’s Special Health Services
Louisiana Assistive Technology Access Network
and for the 200 NOW Waiver Slots
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Thank you for your support!
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Our Core Values (Now absent from the privatized LSU Interim Hospital website)
Here’s an item we retrieved from the Medical Center of Louisiana at New Orleans website in the hours before hospitals in Houma, Lafayette and New Orleans were privatized March 24. In the coming weeks, this blog will feature links to other items we retrieved before the public sites went private.