Ochsner LSU Health announced a new affiliation and affiliation expansion during a press conference Tuesday morning.
During the press conference, Ochsner LSU Health announced that it will be launching a new affiliation with DeSoto Regional Health System this Thursday, July 1st.
Representatives also shared expansion plans to further strengthen its affiliation with North Caddo Medical Center.
Ochsner Health System formally joined forces with LSU Health Shreveport in October 2018, forming what is known today as Ochsner LSU Health Shreveport. Through this public-private partnership, Ochsner LSU Health has enacted its vision to improve the health and well-being of its communities.
“We provide healthcare to anyone that needs it in northwest Louisiana, we take great pride in training the future of the clinical workforce, future physicians, and providing the highest level of specialty care that you can find anywhere in this region,” said Chuck Daigle, CEO, Ochsner LSU Health.
A year after Ochsner LSU Health was formed, the team worked to improve the health of local communities by creating an affiliation with North Caddo Medical Center.
This affiliation was successful by creating a 50 percent increase in patient flow from North Caddo Medical Center to Ochsner LSU Health.
“Having a partner, the size of Ochsner LSU Health for a small rural facility brings so many more things to the table that we could never do by ourselves,” said David Jones, CEO, North Caddo Medical Center.
Jones shared an example of how the affiliation has benefited North Caddo Medical Center by describing the support from Ochsner LSU Health-related to urgent COVID-19 testing in early 2020 provided to the system’s nursing home in Vivian, La., “It saved lives in northern Caddo Parish–that’s what the affiliation did for us.”
One area of focus for these affiliations is to successfully coordinate and communicate when transferring patients from rural healthcare settings to Ochsner LSU Health for specialized and immediate care needs.
Though these affiliations offer more than transferring patients.
Ochsner LSU Health’s affiliation with North Caddo Medical Center offers after-hour pharmacy coverage and savings through conversion of supply chain and biomedical equipment contracts.
North Caddo Medical Center also has a rural family practice residency program that supports future rural healthcare needs by training and preparing physicians for a rural setting.
Ochsner LSU Health has already begun providing rotating physicians to enhance specialty care in its new affiliation with DeSoto Regional Medical Center. Ochsner LSU Health expects to increase those specialists and supplement primary care and medical staff as needed.
“Well, it just brings access to world-class health care even at a higher level. We do a great job with primary care but some of that specialty care that we just don’t have, Ochsner LSU does,” said Todd Eppler, CEO, DeSoto Regional Medical Center. “So, we are hoping to bring some of those specialties down there physically and those we can’t through telemedicine or through the Ochsner apps.”
Future integration with Ochsner LSU Health for both rural systems, located north and south of Ochsner LSU Health’s main facilities, includes expansion of telemedicine, radiology, and laboratory services, and increased continuity of care and patient experience by integrating electronic medical record systems.
“If we can provide that access to care in those communities and support those communities with further sub-specialization then that is good for the citizens of northwest Louisiana and it is good for healthcare,” said Daigle.