The Baton Rouge General Medical Center Mid City will close its hospital emergency room within the next 60 days.
“We’ve left no stone unturned as we’ve sought solutions that would allow us to keep the Mid City ER open,” said Baton Rouge General President and CEO Mark Slyter. “Though closing Mid City ER doors, the care and commitment to our Mid City community remains strong.”
The surprise announcement came in a news release issued Tuesday morning.
The General’s board of directors had voted last August to close the emergency room in November, a casualty of growing red ink associated with uninsured patients entering its doors.
The Jindal administration had promised an infusion of cash to allow continued operation of the ER at the only facility between Zachary and south Baton Rouge treating life-threatening medical crisis.
But that plan apparently went awry.
The news release said the hospital, the state Department of Health and Hospitals, the Baton Rouge Area Foundation and Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center would “collaborate on a new model of health care for Mid City Baton Rouge.”
Plans include expansion of the LSU Health Baton Rouge urgent care clinic which opened recently on North Foster Drive and “a clinical redesign of services.”
There will also be a study of the long-term potential and sustainability of the General’s campus in the Mid City community.
According to the news release, the state has committed to support a construction of a new urgent care facility near the General’s Mid City campus.
The General’s Mid City campus was impacted by April 2013 closure of LSU’s Earl K. Long Medical Center, and the charity hospital’s mental health emergency room extension at its Airline Highway facility in north Baton Rouge.
LSU moved its inpatient operations and its medical education programs to the Lake - located off Essen Lane in south Baton Rouge.
The Mid City hospital, located on Florida Boulevard, reported losses of $1 million a month. Officials projected losses would reach $20 million in 2015.