Ochsner Has Acquired Louisiana’s Largest Private OB-GYN Practice

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Ochsner Health System recently acquired New Orleans-based Louisiana Women’s Healthcare, the largest obstetrics and gynecology physician group in the state. These leading healthcare organizations have teamed up to provide high-quality healthcare services for women in Greater Baton Rouge and throughout Louisiana by using cutting-edge technology and innovation to improve outcomes. The deal also means Ochsner Health System physicians will now be delivering the majority of babies born in the Baton Rouge region.

Enhancing women’s healthcare in Louisiana 

“We are excited to work with Louisiana Women’s Healthcare, an organization with outstanding physicians and a strong reputation of caring for women in greater Baton Rouge. Together, we will be able to grow, expand access to coordinated care and bring even greater value to patients,” says Warner Thomas, CEO, Ochsner Health. “Our missions are aligned to improve the health and lives of women in the Baton Rouge community and across the entire state of Louisiana. This partnership is another example of Ochsner’s growth, investment and commitment to the people of Baton Rouge.”

Improving operations

Now almost 25 years old, Louisiana Women’s Healthcare currently serves over 70,000 patients annually at its facility. Doctors also deliver over 5,000 babies every year at Woman’s Hospital. Out of the 10,600 babies delivered across Baton Rouge in 2020, 3,000 were delivered at Woman’s Hospital. As Louisiana’s largest regional health system, “Ochsner has significant purchasing power for supplies and technology, which is not the case for even mid-sized physician groups”, said Kim Sangari, CEO of Louisiana Women’s Healthcare. “We can reduce our expenses and duplication of efforts because they have spent so much time, energy and money in information technology, particularly for pregnant women,” Sangari said.

Telehealth expansion

In response to the growing demand for telemedicine, Ochsner is also investing in digital health — a move that initially attracted Louisiana Women’s Healthcare to the acquisition. “Working with Ochsner will allow us to provide these important services to our patients on their nationally recognized electronic health record system,” said Louisiana Women’s Healthcare physician, Dr. O’Neil Parenton. Ochsner’s TeleStork Program may also potentially be introduced at Woman’s Hospital. It involves constantly live streaming maternal and fetal health records to detect any potential stress in pregnant mothers, so a specialty care team can intervene when necessary. The company also intends to roll-out Oschner’s Connected Maternity Online Monitoring program, which lets pregnant women share vital stats (like weight and blood pressure) from the comfort of home.

Staying healthy during pregnancy

Maintaining good health is particularly important during pregnancy. For example, it’s important to  maintain a healthy vaginal pH. When pH levels are unbalanced, susceptibility to infection increases. Regular OB-GYN checkups are advised to ensure your vagina stays healthy as a doctor can test vaginal pH level and diagnose infection if present. Moreover, gestational hypertension (high blood pressure during pregnancy) along with low blood pressure are also common health issues during pregnancy. “If you catch it early by monitoring it, you can avoid a visit to the hospital and make interventions” Sangari explained. “By controlling hypertension you keep the cost of health care down by avoiding unnecessary visits and keeping the patient full-term. That’s just an example of a little change that can be so convenient for the patient and a better outcome that reduces the cost of care”.
Ochsner only plans to further extend their operation in the years to come. “We’ll look for more opportunities to grow and expand in Baton Rouge in the future. This is another natural step”, said Thomas. “We’re going to be growing jobs in Baton Rouge, not shrinking jobs”.

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