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DHH, area hospitals plan for BRG ER closure

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BATON ROUGE - The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals announced plans Friday to handle the upcoming closure of Baton Rouge General Hospital's Mid City emergency room on March 31.

Other hospitals in the Capital Area also announced strategies, including hiring additional staff and extending treatment hours, to help meet health care demand in the city after the emergency room closes. Among these was LSU Health Baton Rouge's urgent care clinic, which is just more than a mile away on N. Foster Drive from the soon to be closed Mid City ER. They said the facility will increase their hours of operation to 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., seven days a week, starting on Mar. 23.

Another LSU Health facility, the Baton Rouge North Urgent Care Clinic, announced plans to extend hours during which the hospital offers CT and MRI services to help fill the gap.

Our Lady of the Lake will also attempt to meet demand by extending patient access to its clinics throughout the city, starting with additional coverage for pediatrics at the OLOL North Campus Urgent Care facility. Same-day appointments and longer hours of operation are also coming to OLOL's pediatric clinics at their Goodwood location, which is located in the area that the closing ER formerly served. The hospital also recently increased overall capacity in its emergency room departments.

Oschner and Lane are other area hospitals capable of increasing emergency room and urgent care clinic facility operations to meet demand.

The closure of Baton Rouge General's emergency room comes as the hospital attempts to cope with financial losses that have grown to as much as $2 million a month.

State health officials said they will continue to monitor the needs of the Baton Rouge area's demand for emergency room services following the closure, and expressed their confidence that area hospitals are capable of working with the public to ensure their health care needs are met.

 

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