health care

“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. 

For the first time, Baton Rouge General Medical Center is hosting insurance navigators, trained to offer assistance to anyone who wants to buy health care coverage through the federal marketplace, which is now in its second year.


Premiums Go Up, So Might Enrollment

Dec 1, 2014

It’s that time of year — the open enrollment period for health plans.

In the second year of insurance exchanges established by the Affordable Care Act, premiums in Louisiana, as elsewhere, will be higher on average.

“And there are some understandable reasons for that," said Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon. The No. 1 reason is that insurers can no longer turn away people with pre-existing conditions. "They have to take all comers."


With a battle cry of “Repeal Obamacare”, Republicans took control of the U.S. Senate earlier this month. Wrangling in Washington over when—or if—to actually act on that campaign promise is part of the backdrop to Louisiana’s Senate runoff.


Cheryl DalPozzal / It's New Orleans

There are a number of New Orleans businesses that are as much a part of the unique vocabulary of New Orleanians as "muffuletta" and "poboy." Some of them — like K&B and Schwegmans  — are in the "aint dere no more" category. One New Orleans institution that is still here is what we call either "Oxner" or "Oshner." However you say it, everybody in New Orleans knows what you mean. Its real title is Ochsner Health System.

Should Louisiana hospitals be guaranteed a set amount of state health care funding—if they put up part of the money themselves? That’s what Constitutional Amendment 2 on Tuesday’s ballot is asking voters to decide.

Cheryl DalPozzal / It's New Orleans

Whatever era of boom or bust we’re in, it seems we never stop working on healthcare, or on education.

Locally, in education, New Orleans is the only city in the United States where 100 percent of our public schools are charter schools. What started out as a post-Katrina experiment has become a nationwide trend setting model. The Executive Director of the Louisiana Association of Public Charter Schools, Caroline Roemer Shirley, explains the revolutionary new business model to Peter Ricchiuti on this episode of Out to Lunch.

Between Essen, Bluebonnet, Perkins and I-10 in Baton Rouge, there’s a whole bunch of health clinics and medical facilities – including Our Lady of the Lake Hospital, Baton Rouge General, The Baton Rouge Clinic, and Pennington Biomedical. 

Chances are you'll get stuck in traffic when you drive through that corridor. 

The Baton Rouge Area Foundation has set out to address that problem by creating a new Health District that would not only mean you sit through fewer traffic lights, but that health care is delivered more efficiently. 

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