The Louisiana State University health system will lay off nearly a quarter of its 6,140 employees in a round of deep budget cuts that could dramatically alter the state’s charity-care landscape, according to The Times-Picayune.
The university’s Board of Supervisors approved a plan Thursday that will reduce state support to the public system’s seven southern Louisiana hospitals by $85-million. Cuts in federal Medicaid payment to the state will bring the total budget cut to $152-million, 19 percent of the health network’s $802-million budget
Frank Opelka, the new head of the LSU system, told board members and Louisiana legislators that the current model for delivering safety-net care through state hospitals is “unsustainable.” He said the system would look for partnerships with private hospitals to meet care needs for the uninsured and Medicaid patients, who make up the vast majority of its clientele.
The Interim LSU Public Hospital in New Orleans will be hardest hit, shedding 432 jobs and closing or cutting hours at several associated clinics.