Louisiana Department of Health Hospitals Secretary Alan Levine and New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu this week submitted a letter and proposal to U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Director Cindy Mann highlighting the importance of Primary Care Access and Stabilization Grant clinics in Orleans, Jefferson, St. Bernard and Plaquemines Parishes and offering funding solutions to keep the clinics open. Federal funding for the clinics currently ends on Sept. 30.

“I'm grateful for the partnership with Mayor Landrieu as we put forth this creative proposal to sustain funding for these critical safety net clinics and primary care access points,” Levine said. “We are working together to develop a sustainable funding solution to keep these clinics open once their federal funding expires.  We hope the federal government will see the value in this proposal and continue this successful partnership"

The more than 90 clinics, which were created using the Primary Care Access and Stabilization funding after Hurricane Katrina, have served more than 250,000 individuals and continue to be a significant part of the infrastructure in the area – a point underscored as the region deals with the ongoing effects of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

“We must continue to work with our local, state, and federal partners to ensure that these primary care clinics are funded and preserved,” said Mayor Landrieu. “They provide cost-effective primary care for much of our community and are vital to improving the quality life of the residents here in New Orleans.”

The proposal and letter are attached.

The Louisiana Department of Health strives to protect and promote health statewide and to ensure access to medical, preventive and rehabilitative services for all state citizens. To learn more about LDH, visit http://www.dhh.louisiana.gov.