BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Internal documents from LSU's budget cut discussions show a former Louisiana health secretary suggested the university system could bring in private companies to operate its hospitals in Shreveport, Bogalusa and Houma, to shrink costs.
Memos released Thursday by LSU in response to a public records request say Alan Levine, who now works for a Florida-based health care company, offered the idea to university leaders at a July meeting.
Meanwhile, LSU health care chief Fred Cerise suggested using bridge funds to keep all university-run health facilities open until 2014, then tapping into Medicaid expansion dollars available under the federal health care overhaul law.
Cerise says Gov. Bobby Jindal's current health secretary, Bruce Greenstein, immediately rejected that idea. Jindal is refusing to expand Medicaid in Louisiana, calling it too expensive.