health care

Louisianians Keep Their Health Insurance Subsidies

Jun 29, 2015

138,000 people in Louisiana are still receiving subsidies for health insurance through the federal government.  For them, the United States Supreme Court’s ruling on the Affordable Care Act last week was good news. 

Eileen Fleming / WWNO

The University Medical Center is getting ready to open in August. The news media was given a preview of how the billion-dollar hospital is taking shape.

Tegan Wendland / WWNO

Raising kids is hard work. The St. Tammany Parish Parenting Center in Covington helps parents from all backgrounds face those challenges and take pride in the role they play in their children’s lives, and it’s also a place to socialize and find camaraderie.

On a recent weekday evening toys were scattered across the carpet and children played while parents filed in after work to support each other and learn how to be the best parents they can be.

Researchers at Pennington Biomedical know that in order to get kids eating well, they’ve got to get to the parents. As part of a new study, Pennington Interventionist, Allison Davis, is experimenting with going into the homes of families with young children -- ages two to six. She’s showing parents and their kids how to eat better and move more.

Shreveport charity health clinic, the MLK Health Center and Pharmacy, has developed a community garden and outdoor exercise area adjacent to its building.

The Everyday Choices Community Garden and Learning Center was made possible through a $35,966 donation from energy giant BHP Billiton. A check presentation was held Tuesday in the garden. The move will further expand MLK Health Center’s services, according to executive director Janet Mentesane.

The Medicaid Waiver Waiting Game

Apr 20, 2015

Last year, groups advocating for Louisianians with developmental disabilities sought and won an expansion of supports through Medicaid waivers. But when mid-year cuts to the state budget were enacted, those waiver slots were frozen. Rhiannon Traigle is one of many parents asking the legislature to lift the freeze.

While Chiffonda Hampton was serving three years in East Baton Rouge Parish Prison, she met Tonja Myles, a Peer Support Specialist with Capital Area Human Services. Myles was offering wellness classes to inmates with mental illness. Those classes taught Hampton how to cope with the anger of being abused as a child and basic life skills she had never learned before. Now that Hampton is out of prison, she continues to check in with Myles at CAHS.

“Is your hospital next?” asked a sign prominently displayed during a February 11 rally on the state Capitol steps, protesting the planned closure of Baton Rouge General’s Mid-City Emergency Room. With that ER shutting down tomorrow—an unintended consequence of privatizing Louisiana’s charity hospital system—it’s a question that continues to trouble Baton Rouge Rep. Patricia Smith.

Urgent Care Not Emergency Care

Mar 2, 2015

After the nearby charity hospital, Earl K. Long, was shut down, Baton Rouge General’s Mid-City Emergency Room took on more patients. And, in 2013, LSU Health’s Urgent Care Clinic in North Baton Rouge opened. But, the sign on the urgent care clinic’s door reads, “NO EMERGENCY ROOM.”

Lane Regional Medical Center in Zachary sits on the northern edge of East Baton Rouge Parish. Ochsner on O’Neal Lane and Our Lady of the Lake on Essen are both about 20 miles to the south.  

There will be no emergency room in between once Baton Rouge General at Mid City closes their ER sometime between April and May.  That means ambulances will have farther to travel.