Big cuts coming to Louisiana healthcare

POSTED: Friday, July 13, 2012 - 7:02pm

UPDATED: Friday, July 13, 2012 - 7:04pm

$859.2 million dollars. That's what's being cut from Louisiana's health care system. This is because of a decrease in federal funding for the state's Medicaid program. This will result in reductions in Medicaid payment claims by four percent starting next month. Despite this, Department of Health and Hospitals Secretary Bruce Greenstein says they'll do everything they can to keep the quality of service high.

"Our focus remains on ensuring that we're able to continue our mission and that is to make sure the people of Louisiana have access to quality health care services in the most effective, efficient and sustainable way possible," says Greenstein

The cuts also mean a reduction in more than 300 positions. One of the biggest victims of all these cuts will be L.S..U. hospitals. More than $300 million dollars is coming out of their budget. L.S.U. interim president William Jenkins says the university is going to have to make some major changes in order to cope.

"We must explore and bring about the delivery of care in different ways perhaps through different avenues, developing different partnerships,” says Jenkins.

But the news isn't all bad. Greenstein says budget cuts didn't mean that everything is getting slashed.

"We do not touch critical programs like Early Steps and access to recovery in our Office of Behavioral Health, optional programs for women with breast and cervical cancer and foster children have not been cut," says Greenstein.

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