BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - From closing its emergency room to moving the regional burn unit, the Mid-City campus of Baton Rouge General Hospital has undergone a lot of recent dramatic changes. Many feared those changes foreshadowed a dim future. However, the hospital's CEO Mark Slyter said the future, though different, is bright.
"The biggest thing that we're finding in our analysis and our key findings in the last 18 months hearing back from folks is a big emphasis on chronic care and senior care and behavior health pieces," said Slyter.
The hospital announced a new vision for the future that includes focusing on specialty and chronic care at the Mid-City location.
In addition to primary care services, the campus will be the site of a new pilot program called the Health Innovation Center. Slyter said the Center which will provide a team approach to helping patients with complex cases.
The campus will also add 19 beds to its Behavioral Health Unit for geriatric patients.
"Unfortunately, Louisiana ranks towards the bottom of the pack in access to behavioral health issues. As a community we still have a lot more," said Slyter. "We look forward to partnering with others on that."
Ideas for unused space at the Mid-City campus include retail or even partnering with community groups to create spaces for meetings or classrooms.
The Bluebonnet campus will see changes too. In a few months, it will house the Regional Burn Unit with plans to build onto the unit down the road.
Slyter added that only a fraction of the 142 acre campus is developed, leaving plenty of room to grow. However, the CEO wants it clear that both campuses will remain open.
"Health care will evolve. This community will evolve. Who knows what Mid-City will be in the future, but we will be here," said Slyter.