17:1518       E.A. Conway Medical Center; merger with Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center at Shreveport

A. (1) The E.A. Conway Medical Center at Monroe, hereinafter referred to as the "medical center", is hereby merged with and shall become a part of the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center at Shreveport, hereinafter referred to as the "health sciences center".

(2) The medical center shall be operated primarily for the medical care of the uninsured and medically indigent residents of the state and others in need of medical care and as a teaching institution. "Medically indigent" means any person below two hundred percent of the Federal Poverty Level and uninsured.

B. Management of the medical center shall be the responsibility of the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center at Shreveport, Office of the Chancellor, which shall have authority to exercise all power to direct, control, supervise, and manage the medical center. As part of the health sciences center, the medical center shall be maintained and operated in the same manner as those components of the health sciences center which provide medical care. The medical center shall have access to all new health care initiatives and enjoy the benefits of technology and equipment acquired for the maintenance or enhancement of the delivery of medical care by organizations comprising the health sciences center.

C. All employees engaged in the performance of duties relating to the functions of the medical center shall become employees of the health sciences center and shall continue to perform their duties and maintain their rights, privileges, and benefits in accordance with all laws, rules, and regulations applicable to civil service employees and employees of the health sciences center. Medical center employees shall be eligible for the same benefits and professional development opportunities as similarly situated employees of the health sciences center.

D. All books, papers, records, money, accounts receivable, actions, and all property of every kind, movable and immovable, real and personal, heretofore possessed, controlled, or used by the medical center are hereby transferred to the health sciences center. For accounting purposes all liabilities, expenses, obligations, accounts receivable, revenues, and similar items shall be deemed to have been transferred to the health sciences center to the same extent as if originally made.

E. (1) The medical center shall be an organizational unit within the health sciences center and shall be a separate line item within the appropriation schedule.

(2) In the event of a budget deficit or fiscal emergency, neither funds nor personnel shall be reduced from either the medical center or the health sciences center to offset or compensate for such deficit or emergency in the other center.

F. Neither the medical center nor the emergency room shall be closed without legislative approval. The health sciences center shall not authorize the medical center to reduce health care services provided by the facility in any manner that causes annual expenditures for the facility to be reduced on an annualized basis by greater than thirty-five percent of the previous year actual spending level. Funding may be provided by any local, regional, state, federal, or private sources to augment existing funding or to restore reduced funding. Legislative approval may be granted by either concurrent resolution or appropriate action in the General Appropriation Act.

G. The medical center shall continue its commitment to collaborate with and support rural physicians and rural hospitals in the northeast Louisiana area by sponsoring continuing medical education, furnishing medical consultation to and with physicians, and rendering other support as may be appropriated, within available resources.

< For supersedure of subsec. H, see italic note following this section >

H. The E. A. Conway Medical Center Advisory Council is hereby established. The council shall consist of fourteen members who shall serve without compensation. Each legislator representing the parishes of Caldwell, East Carroll, Franklin, Jackson, Lincoln, Madison, Morehouse, Ouachita, Richland, Tensas, Union, or West Carroll shall appoint one member to serve on the advisory council. One member shall be appointed by the hospital administrator. One member shall by appointed by the hospital employee union. Each member of the council shall hold office until the appointment and qualification of his successor. Members shall be appointed for a term of four years. Members may serve two successive terms only. The council shall meet at least once in each quarter of each calendar year or upon call of the secretary or chairman. Seven members shall constitute a quorum. The council shall elect from its members a chairman, a vice chairman, and secretary, and such committees as it deems necessary to carry out its duties, each for a term or one year. All meetings of the council shall be public, and except as otherwise provided by law, all records of the council shall be open to inspection. Within thirty days after their appointment, the members of the council shall take an oath, before any person authorized to administer oaths, to faithfully and impartially perform their duties. Such oaths shall be filed with the secretary of state. The domicile of the council shall be in the city of Monroe. The council shall inquire into the needs of the employment service industry, the administration of this Part, the matter of the policies thereof, and make such recommendations with respect thereto as may be deemed important and necessary for the welfare of the state, the health of the public, and the welfare and progress of the hospital industry, and confer and advise with the secretary as to how the council may best serve the E.A. Conway Medical Center.

I. (1) This merger shall become effective on July 1, 2003; however, no changes at the medical center, either administrative or fiscal, shall take place prior to such date without the written consent of the chancellor of the health sciences center.

(2) The Health Care Services Division of the Louisiana State University Medical Center shall work with the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center at Shreveport, Office of the Chancellor, to effectuate a complete and timely transition of the management of the medical center to the health sciences center, including but not limited to the electronic transfer of data or the sale of computerized services by the Health Care Services Division, or both.

Added by Acts 2003, No. 872, s 1, eff. July 1, 2003.