St. Francis Medical Center

St. Francis Medical Center to Consolidate North Campus Services

09/22/2016

Decision Comes after Thorough Analysis of Multiple Scenarios; Inadequate and Inequitable Reimbursement from State Cited as Primary Driver

MONROE, LA - St. Francis Medical Center today announced the organization will consolidate services from St. Francis Medical Center-North, which is located on Highway 165 North, to other locations, including St. Francis’ main campus in downtown Monroe. The transition will begin on October 1 and be completed by Nov. 1. The North campus, which has served largely as an outpatient facility, will be closed.

“After a complete review of multiple scenarios and different strategies and prayerful discernment by our leadership and board, we have decided to consolidate the operations at our North campus to our downtown and Community Health Center locations,” said Kristin Wolkart, St. Francis Medical Center President and CEO. “We simply can’t afford to provide primary access from two acute care locations while we receive some of the lowest Medicaid and uncompensated care reimbursement in the state. We are in the unfortunate position of reducing an important access point for the community or putting our entire health ministry in peril, which we simply can’t do. Consolidating our services fortifies our health ministry and is the best decision for our community and patients.”

The major components of the consolidation are:

  • Emergency services will no longer be provided at our North campus effective Saturday, October 1, 2016, as St. Francis consolidates to one centralized emergency room at the downtown campus of St. Francis Medical Center on Jackson Street, which will remain open 24/7.
  • St. Francis Sleep Lab Center will be moving to 410 Wood Street near our downtown campus effective Saturday, October 1, 2016.
  • Tobacco Cessation Services will be moving to a location near our downtown campus by the end of October 2016.
  • Kitty DeGree Breast Health Center will be moving to a newly renovated space at the Community Health Center, located on Tower Drive in mid-town Monroe, effective Monday, October 17, 2016.
  • Lab and radiology services will no longer be provided at our North campus effective Monday, October 31, 2016. The Community Health Center on Tower Drive in Monroe offers these services and can accommodate additional patients.

To ease the transition, St. Francis will expand hours of operation at several of our primary care and urgent care clinics for patients who need urgent, yet non-emergent care. Team members, many of whom already work across our campuses, will be relocated to other locations.

As with other healthcare providers, St. Francis is treating a high number of people with Medicaid. St. Francis supports Medicaid expansion, yet is impacted disproportionately because of the inadequate and inequitable payments St. Francis receives from the state. Strong financial health is important because it helps St. Francis maintain its ministry of work.

“Caring for patients with Medicaid is near and dear to our mission and our call to serve those most in need, yet the payments we receive are well below both the cost of care and the payments that the vast majority of other hospitals receive. St. Francis gets less than $800 for Medicaid per day. In comparison, University Health Conway and for-profit Glenwood Regional Medical Center, each get substantially more than that in payments from the state,” said Wolkart. “We’ve tried to improve reimbursement several times with both the prior and current administrations. The state has worked with other hospitals to address this gap, and we’re disappointed they haven’t done the same to preserve care for people with Medicaid in Northeast Louisiana.”

Media Contact:

Saundra Nalley
(318) 966-7366
saundra,nalley@stfran.com

About Our Lady of the Lake

Our Lady of the Lake is a not-for-profit 800-bed medical center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana with more than 7,100 employees committed to building a healthy community through excellence in patient care and education. With a Regional Medical Center, dedicated Children’s Hospital, two freestanding emergency rooms, and a 450-provider Physician Group, Our Lady of the Lake provides comprehensive healthcare services for common to complex conditions. Our Lady of the Lake is a primary teaching site for graduate medical education programs and is recognized in the areas of heart and vascular, trauma and emergency care, stroke, cancer care, minimally-invasive procedures and more. In 2016, Our Lady of the Lake was one of three hospitals recognized by the American Hospital Association with the Quest for Quality Prize award.

About Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital

Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital is Louisiana’s fastest growing children’s hospital treating more than 100,000 patients annually from across Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. The hospital is the only healthcare provider in the Baton Rouge area that provides a full range of pediatric services ranging from a 24/7 pediatric emergency room to a team of more than 100 pediatricians and pediatric specialists. For more information, visit www.ololchildrens.org.

The new freestanding Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital is currently under construction and is set to open in 2019. To learn more about the project, visit www.letsbuildamazing.com.

About Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Health

Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Health is a collaborative, coordinated and child-focused statewide health network that provides patients with more access to physicians and providers specifically trained to care for children. The network includes hospital-based services at the main campus in Baton Rouge and the future freestanding hospital, as well as in Monroe with St. Francis Pediatrics. It also connects pediatricians, pediatric specialists and other health providers across our state with clinics in the Baton Rouge region, Hammond, Lafayette and Monroe. This model of coordinated pediatric healthcare extends the vital work happening at Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital into more communities across Louisiana so families have greater access to expertise close to home.

About the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System

The Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System is one the largest healthcare systems in Louisiana and is the leading healthcare provider for more than half the state’s population. The health system is a non-profit, Catholic organization sponsored by the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady. Headquartered in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, we serve patients statewide through a network of hospitals, clinics, physicians, elderly housing and integrated systems. Our five hospitals include St. Francis Medical Center in Monroe, Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center in Baton Rouge, Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center in Lafayette, St. Elizabeth Hospital in Gonzales and Our Lady of the Angels in Bogalusa. For more information, visit www.fmolhs.org.

About Our Lady of the Lake Physician Group

With more than 450 healthcare providers throughout more than 70 locations, Our Lady of the Lake Physician Group is one of the area’s largest physician networks. In addition to primary care, this experienced group of doctors specializes in diagnosis and treatment of a broad range of illnesses and complex medical problems.

About St. Elizabeth Physicians

St. Elizabeth Physicians is the largest provider of primary and specialty care in Ascension Parish, employing over 50 primary care physicians, specialists and providers. St. Elizabeth Physicians has been recognized for quality by the Louisiana Quality Foundation, and as the Large Business of the Year twice by the Ascension Chamber of Commerce. For more information, visit the St. Elizabeth Hospital website.

About St. Francis Medical Center

From a modest beginning in July 1913 as a three-story red brick building with 75 patient beds, St. Francis Medical Center has grown to become Northeast Louisiana’s largest healthcare provider and one of the largest employers in Ouachita Parish. Today, St. Francis Medical Center is licensed for 367 beds, employs over 1,700 team members and partners with over 300 medical staff members. Our mission of extending the healing ministry of Jesus Christ to those most in need reaches out to 17 parishes in Louisiana and three counties in Arkansas, an area with a population exceeding 515,000 people. St. Francis Medical Center is part of the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System. For more information, visit the St. Francis Medical Center website.

About St. Francis Medical Group

With over 50 healthcare providers at 16 clinic locations, St. Francis Medical Group is one of the area’s largest physician networks and is backed by the resources of St. Francis Medical Center. In addition to primary care, this experienced group of providers specializes in diagnosis and treatment of a broad range of illnesses and complex medical problems. For more information visit the St. Francis Medical Center website.