Checking Up On Hospitals
a guide to regional health care
(formerly American Legion Hospital)
1305 Crowley Rayne Hwy., Crowley
A part of the Lafayette General Health (LGH) system since 2014, Acadia General Hospital is licensed for 140 beds. The hospital provides a 24-hour Emergency Department, as well as acute medical and surgical care with services in obstetrics, gynecology, oncology, pediatrics, orthopedics, cardiology, nephrology and ophthalmology. Since joining LGH, Acadia General has added a new Imaging Center, expanded cancer treatment services and brought more physicians to the Acadia Parish area. Offsite outpatient departments of the hospital include Acadia General Imaging and The Center for Wound Care & Hyperbaric Medicine. Acadia General is currently raising funds to construct and equip a proposed 9,768 square-foot Emergency Department addition.
Allen Parish Hospital
108 Sixth St., Kinder
Allen Parish Hospital is an acute and specialty care hospital that serves the tri-parish area of Allen, Beauregard and Jeff Davis parishes. Along with rural health clinics in Kinder, APH offers home health post-op care for orthopedic, cardiac and general surgeries and homebound individuals. It provides group and individual therapy in addition to professional counseling in its psychiatric recovery unit for mental illness and addiction. APH also works with the National Alliance on Mental Illness to provide a free Family-to-Family Education Program that covers a range of issues, from medication side effects to current research on mental illness causes.
Oakdale Community Hospital
130 Hospital Drive, Oakdale
This 60-bed hospital was recently recognized and awarded for performance related to positive patient experience. The hospital offers inpatient and outpatient services. Through the American College of Radiology the hospital houses a certified mammography unit which uses low-energy X-rays to detect abnormalities. The hospital consistently ranks as a top performer in Louisiana for heart-failure treatment and offers a variety of non-invasive cardiology services.
St. Elizabeth Hospital
1125 West Hwy. 30, Gonzales
St. Elizabeth Hospital is a 78-bed acute care facility. The hospital is part of the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System, an 1,800 bed, five-hospital system serving nearly 60 percent of Louisiana’s population. St. Elizabeth Hospital currently employs over 500 team members and is affiliated with St. Elizabeth Physicians, a primary care and specialist practice employing over 35 physicians and practitioners.
St. Elizabeth Hospital has been recognized four times as the Hospital of the Year by the Louisiana Nurses Foundation, has twice been named to the 100 Best Places to Work in Healthcare® by Modern Healthcare Magazine, and has received numerous other awards for quality. The hospital has continued to strive to live out its mission to serve those most in need by providing the highest quality healthcare delivered in a compassionate manner.
Assumption Community Hospital
135 Hwy. 402, Napoleonville
Assumption Community Hospital is a critical-access hospital with six beds. Assumption Community Hospital operates as a nonprofit hospital. Outpatient services includes a stop-smoking program and breast cancer screenings and mammograms. As part of their community outreach, they also provide health fairs and health screenings to Assumption Parish.
Christus St. Patrick Hospital
524 Dr. Michael DeBakey Drive, Lake Charles
Named for the patron saint of Ireland upon the insistence of Dr. John Greene Martin, Christus St. Patrick Hospital was dedicated on St. Patrick’s Day in 1908 and joined the Christus Health system in 1999 along with the Sisters of Charity Health and the Incarnate Word health care systems. The hospital’s latest offers behavioral health services with an inpatient geriatric program and outpatient care for seniors and a pediatric unit, as well as a diabetes management center, longterm acute care in the Dubuis Hospital within Christus St. Patrick Hospital. It also houses a rehabilitation center and offers lung cancer screenings. The hospital partnered with Southwest Louisiana Imaging to provide MRI and CT services.
Lake Charles Memorial Hospital
1701 Oak Park Blvd., Lake Charles
The largest, community-owned, nonprofit health system in southwest Louisiana has four campuses: Lake Charles Memorial Hospital, Lake Charles Memorial Hospital for Women, Memorial Specialty Hospital and Moss Memorial Health Clinic. These entities employ over 2,500 people with over 250 physicians on staff. The hospital was awarded the Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval recognizing its dedication to the commission’s high standards. Health care specialties include inpatient and outpatient services, as well as a full-service emergency department and urgent care facility. Diagnostics and pathology services available include CT scanning, ultrasound, nuclear medicine, MRI, endoscopic, sleep studies, cardiovascular and cancer diagnostics. From pediatric to geriatric care, Memorial is a full-service health care delivery system. Specialty services include cardiovascular, cancer, family medicine, ENT, urology, cardiac, orthopedic trauma and general surgery, psychiatry, rehabilitation, pulmonology, orthopedics and sports medicine, gynecology and obstetrics, neurology, neurosurgery, nephrology, rheumatology, internal medicine, pain medicine, behavioral health and pediatrics. In addition, home health, wound card and long-term acute care services are also available.
Lake Area Medical Center
(formerly Women’s and Children’s Hospital)
4200 Nelson Road, Lake Charles
This 88-bed full-service acute care hospital opened its doors in 1984 and offers inpatient, outpatient, medical and surgical care for men, women and children. With over 200 physicians on the medical staff covering 49 specialties, Lake Area Medical Center's key services include; Cardiology, Labor & Delivery, a Level III Neonatal ICU, Surgical Services including Robotic-Assisted Surgery, a 24-hour Emergency Department, and Wound Care. It is an accredited Bariatric Surgery Center, offering three weight loss surgery options. It also serves patients at the Grand Lake Medical Clinic, Urology Center of SWLA, Lake Area Physicians and Surgicare of Lake Charles – an ambulatory outpatient surgery center.
West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital
701 East Cypress St., Sulphur
The 109-bed West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital recently became the first community hospital in the nation to implement 128 Slice Philip Ingenuity, CT technology, computing a more accurate CAT scan. It also recently launched the area’s first specialized program for breast cancer patients, designating a single nurse or other health professional to help patients navigate the path to recovery. WCCH also has a sleep center and both cardiac rehabilitation and cardiology services, along with servicing rural health clinics in Hackberry, Vinton and Johnson Bayou. It is the first hospital in Southwest Louisiana to have computer-assisting technology for joint replacement and is home to one of the largest joint replacement programs in the region. It also provides therapeutic equestrian services through the Genesis Therapeutic Riding Center for patients with developmental disabilities or brain injuries. WCCH also participates in Shots for Tots to provide cheap or free immunization for children.
Mercy Regional Medical Center
3501 Hwy. 190 E., Eunice;
800 E. Main St., Ville Platte
The nonprofit Mercy Regional Medical Center formed when Ville Platte Medical Center and Acadian Medical Center merged in 2010 and now serves more than 97,000 patients annually under LifePoint Hospitals. Between the two campuses, in Euince and Ville Platte, the hospital offers a 24-hour emergency room, a cardiology center, pain management, imaging, dialysis, gastroenterology, gynecology, obstetrics, oncology and more.
Savoy Medical Center
801 Poinciana Ave., Mamou
Savoy Medical Center possesses a number of amenities that rival large-city hospitals, including a 24-hour emergency room and critical care unit. It also offers patient diagnostic services 24 hours a day, including mammography and bone-density testing. Savoy also offers services for inpatient and outpatient surgery, mental health for both patients and family members and social services to help with hospitalization, childbirth, hyperbaric oxygen therapy and physical, pedodontic, podiatry, plastic and reconstructive, vascular and urological surgeries.
600 N. Lewis Ave., New Iberia
This 103-bed full-service facility is an affiliate of The Regional Health System of Acadiana. The New Iberia facility’s services include cardiovascular, general surgery, orthopedics, emergency care, obstetrics and gynecology surgery and rehabilitations. It recently implemented the American Orthopaedic Association’s bone health quality improvement program, helping to identify, evaluate and treat patients with low bone density or osteoporosis.
Iberia Medical Center
2315 E. Main St., New Iberia
This 99-bed hospital received the Women’s Choice award for Best Patient Experience in 2013 and 2014 and was awarded a 2014 Excellence in Patent Care Award for Doctor Communication by outcomes firm Studer Group. It is a full-service, acute care hospital, providing medical, surgical, obstetrical, gynecological, pediatric, and emergency services; critical care, cardiac care, gastroenterological care; and outpatient diagnostics. The facility also operates a full service Cardiac Cath Lab, an outpatient Rehabilitation Center, an Advanced Wound Center and the Jeanerette Rural Health Clinic and partners with Acadiana Diagnostic Imaging, Iberia Extended Care Hospital, the New Iberia Surgery Center and the Louisiana Stroke Network.
Jefferson Davis Parish
Jennings American Legion Hospital
1634 Elton Road, Jennings
Jennings American Legion Hospital is the only American Legion Hospital in the United States. It houses the only cardiac catheterization lab between Lake Charles and Lafayette, where Jennings American Legion Hospital can offer interventional procedures along with nuclear stress testing and echocardiograms for those who have recently undergone heart procedures. The 24,000-square-foot medical office building and 32,000-square-foot patient tower allow JALH to provide patients with an emergency room, cardiology unit, surgical care, maternity ward and radiology services.
St. James Parish
St. James Parish Hospital
1645 Lutcher Ave., Lutcher
This nonprofit hospital opened its doors in 1955. It is a Joint Commission Accredited 25-bed critical access hospital serving the river region and beyond through its motto “large enough to serve, small enough to care.” Acute care services include a 25-bed floor with a progressive care unit for more acute patients and skilled nursing/swing bed services. The ER is staffed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and offers telestroke technology. The cardiopulmonary department is equipped to offer local cardiology and respiratory testing, the radiology department provides MRI, CT Scans, ultrasounds, digital mammography, fluoroscopy, nuclear medicine and bone density testing and the rehab department offers physical, occupation and speech therapy. The surgery department offers a range of procedures including general, orthopedic, endoscopic and ophthalmological surgeries. The hospital also owns several primary care clinics, a urology clinic, a surgery clinic and offers wound care and sleep studies. In addition, several independent specialists see patients in the hospital's medical plaza.
St. John the Baptist Parish
River Parishes Hospital
500 Rue de Sante, LaPlace
River Parishes Hospital offers a full-range of services for surgeries and treatments. The cardiac center has a comprehensive program, including echocardiography, an exercise testing vascular laboratory and nuclear studies. The gastroenterology department treats gastroenterological organs and also treats liver diseases, including Hepatitis B and C. It also provides services out of an occupational medical center in LaPlace to treat work injuries and illnesses. Surgical specialties include procedures for the head, neck, neurology, gynecology and breast cancer.
Heart Hospital of Lafayette
1105 Kaliste Saloom Road, Lafayette
The Heart Hospital of Lafayette is faith-based and entirely focused on and designed for the cardiovascular health of its patients and was named one of the top 50 cardiovascular hospitals in the country by Thomson Reuters. Along with a 24/7 heart emergency center, it boasts a 64-slice Aquilion CT scanner in the Chest Pain Center, where patients are taught to recognize and react to the early symptoms of heart attacks. The Heartsaver CT scans the heart while beating to uncover heart disease at its earliest stages, and the HEARTVantage free wellness program is the only free nationally accredited specialized care facility that focuses on heart health for patients.
Lafayette General Medical Center
1214 Coolidge St., Lafayette
Lafayette General Medical Center (LGMC), the flagship hospital of the Lafayette General Health system, is the largest full-service, acute-care medical center in Acadiana. The hospital runs the busiest Emergency Department in Acadiana and houses an Intensive Care Unit staffed 24/7 by physicians specializing in critical care. The Women’s & Children’s Services Department boasts Labor & Delivery and Mother/Baby Units, as well as a Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. Partnered with Cardiovascular Institute of the South, LGMC has introduced many new cardiac procedures to Lafayette. Additionally, LGMC holds advanced certifications or accreditations in gynecology, cancer, stroke, orthopedics and bariatric surgery. In 2013, LGMC became a Major Teaching Hospital through a partnership with LSU’s School of Medicine.
Lafayette General Surgical Hospital
1000 W. Pinhook Road, Suite 100, Lafayette
Lafayette General Surgical Hospital (LGSH) is an 18,500-square-foot short-stay hospital, including four operating rooms, 10 beds, radiology, EKG and lab services. A joint venture between Lafayette General Medical Center and local physicians, LGSH is part of the Lafayette General Health system. Services offered include ENT, facial plastic surgery, general surgery, ophthalmology, orthopedics, pain management and gynecology services. The hospital ranks in the 99th percentile in both employee and patient satisfaction surveys nationally.
Lafayette Surgical Specialty Hospital
1101 Kaliste Saloom Road, Lafayette
Lafayette Surgical Specialty Hospital (LSSH), located at 1101 Kaliste Saloom Road, is a patient focused and physician directed hospital specializing in orthopedic, neurological, ear, nose & throat, urological, gynecological, plastics, and general surgical procedures and pain management. The hospital also operates Imaging at LSSH which is a full-service imaging facility located next door. Since opening its doors, the hospital has established a strong reputation and presence in the Acadiana community by exceeding patients' expectations for treatment, comfort, safety and cost.
Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center
4801 Ambassador Caffery Pkwy., Lafayette
Founded by the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady in 1949, Our Lady of Lourdes employs more than 1,200 people and offers a medical staff of over 400 active physicians in a variety of medical and surgical specialties. Lourdes provides a wide-ranging network of facilities and services including Centers of Excellence in the areas of Orthopedics, Stroke and Bariatric Surgery. The hospital is home to the only burn unit in Southwest Louisiana and a Commission on Cancer accredited oncology program. Other community services include four imaging locations, a primary care physician network and community outreach health programs like Northside High School Health Center and St. Bernadette medical clinic for the underinsured and those in need.
Park Place Surgical Hospital
901 Wilson St., Lafayette
What started as the Ambulatory Surgery Center in 1999 has grown to the physician-owned Park Place Surgical Hospital, after joining with Our Lady of Lourdes Regional Medical Center in 2003. Park Place boasts 42 doctors who perform colon, rectal, ENT/otolaryngology, general, OB/GYN, plastic, vascular and orthopedic surgeries, along with occupational and physical therapies. It is the official surgical provider for Ragin’ Cajun Athletics
Regional Medical Center of Acadiana
2810 Ambassador Caffery Pkwy., Lafayette
Regional Medical Center of Acadiana is the first in Acadiana to be accredited a Cycle III Chest Pain Center by the Society of Chest Pain Centers and was recently a Top 100 hospital for coronary bypass surgery and major cardiac surgery and treats patients for a variety of heart conditions. The hospital also specializes in geriatric services with a range of services specially designed for the aging through inpatient, rehabilitation and nursing home programs. Other services include emergency services, hemodialysis, laser surgery, neurology, orthopedics, radiology and medical and surgical intensive care units. It was most recently honored by eQHealth Solutions for its improvements to quality and care.
2390 W. Congress St., Lafayette
University Hospital & Clinics (UHC) is a full-service, acute care hospital offering charity care, allowing persons to receive medically necessary care at no charge or at a reduced charge when they meet financial eligibility requirements. The hospital has been managed by the Lafayette General Health system since 2013. UHC serves as Acadiana’s primary graduate medical education center, training residents and fellows and cultivating physicians for the future. Other services include emergency, interventional radiology, orthopedics, ENT, intensive care, physical therapy, general surgery, infectious disease, cancer and infusion, cardiovascular and GYN. UHC also offers several outpatient clinics and a medical detox unit. A referral from an emergency or primary care physician is required to access most of the hospital’s clinics and/or patients must meet certain criteria to be accepted.
Women’s & Children’s Hospital
4600 Ambassador Caffery Pkwy., Lafayette
For more than 30 years, Women’s & Children’s Hospital, a campus of the Regional Medical Center of Acadiana, has focused on one thing: providing the specialized health care Acadiana women and children need. With more than 75,000 births to date and counting, Women’s & Children’s has grown from its humble beginnings to one of the largest birthing centers in the state. It is the only Acadiana hospital with a Level III Regional Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, dedicated unit providing intensive care for high-risk pregnancies, pediatric-focused Emergency Department and a growing list of pediatric specialists. The hospital’s Elaine M. Junca Women’s Imaging Centre is home to the area’s first breast-dedicated MRI and offers award-winning breast and bone health services in a spa-like atmosphere.
Lady of the Sea General Hospital
200 W. 134th Place, Cut Off
Lady of the Sea General Hospital caters to patients in South Lafourche through the main campus and medical clinics in Larose, Golden Meadow and Cut Off. Through a partnership with the Cardiovascular Institute of the South, Lady of the Sea provides cardiology and cardiopulmonary services to the area. Other services include diabetes support, home health, an ICU, a renal dialysis center and wound care.
Ochsner St. Anne General Hospital
4608 Hwy. 1, Raceland
Ochsner St. Anne provides a wide-range of primary and specialized medical services to the residents of Lafourche Parish and surrounding communities. St. Anne is part of the Ochsner Health System, which has been recognized by US News and World Reports in Cardiology & Heart Surgery and seven other specialties. Ochsner St. Anne provides life saving services including a 24-hour full-service emergency department, stroke care, intensive care unit, and multiple surgical specialties including general surgery, orthopedics, pain management, urology, and ENT. Additional services include maternity suites with state-of-the-art monitoring for mothers and babies, behavioral health services and many advanced medical technologies. Clinics are conveniently located in Raceland, Lockport and Cut Off.
Thibodaux Regional Medical Center
602 N. Acadia Road, Thibodaux
Thibodaux Regional Medical Center is a nationally recognized health care leader. There are 250+ physicians on the medical staff. It is the only medical center in the region to be rated an “A” for patient safety by The Leapfrog Group this spring, and is ranked in the Top 5% in the nation for patient safety by Healthgrades. Additionally, Thibodaux Regional has received the Healthgrades Outstanding Patient Experience award seven years in a row. Its comprehensive Cancer Center is accredited by the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer, and is the only cancer program in Louisiana to receive the College’s Outstanding Achievement Award three times. Thibodaux Regional Medical Center continues to be an innovator and take a leadership role in improving the health of our region by constructing a state-of-the-art Wellness Center. The first of its kind in the Bayou Region, the Center is designed to improve the health and well-being of the region through education, prevention, rehabilitation, and sports and wellness services.
St. Charles Parish
St. Charles Parish Hospital
1057 Paul Maillard Road, Luling
A 20-minute drive from New Orleans, St. Charles Parish Hospital is fully accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations and also operates the Eastbank Medical Office in Destrehan to provide specialties for allergies, asthma, ENT, internal medicine and orthopedics. Other services include an ICU, angiography and vascular procedures, adult behavioral health unit, dialysis and physical, occupational and speech rehabilitation.
St. Landry Parish
Opelousas General Health System
539 E. Prudhomme Lane, Opelousas
Since 1957, Opelousas General Health System has been dedicated to the provision of quality health care through its strong commitment and high standards. Central to the success of OGHS's commitment for excellence is the presence of an outstanding and highly qualified staff of physicians, nurses, technologists and other personnel who provide professional treatment in a caring environment. Serving as the region's referral medical center, OGHS is a 207-bed, full service medical center, and the area's most comprehensive community health care facility offering a wide range of medical specialties and state-of-the-art technology. OGHS is officially designated as Acadiana's ONLY Baby Friendly facility, and has been awarded Gift Designation, as well as The Gift's "Above and Beyond Award" for Excellence in Promoting the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding. OGHS and Cardiovascular Institute of the South (CIS) became the first in the state of Louisiana to provide a revolutionary technology for cardiac patients called “The Chocolate Balloon," which treats complex blockages in both the heart and leg arteries. Opelousas General is the first in Acadiana to provide “Cellutome," a new revolutionary technology in wound care involving skin harvesting.
St. Martin Parish
St. Martin Hospital
210 Champagne Blvd.,
St. Martin Hospital is a 25-bed critical access hospital, which maintains a staffed 24-hour Emergency Department (the only one in St. Martin Parish), including a staffed physician. Services include state-of-the-art imaging with equipment including a CT scanner, MRI and digital mammography machine and a 24/7 Skilled Nursing Unit. Outpatient services include cardiopulmonary, radiology, lab-testing and physical/speech/occupational therapies. The hospital also provides respiratory therapy, infusion and Coumadin services. In 2009, St. Martin Hospital was fully acquired by Lafayette General Medical Center and is now part of the Lafayette General Health system. In 2014, St. Martin Hospital was named one of the 100 Best Places to Work in Healthcare by Modern Healthcare magazine.
St. Mary Parish
Franklin Foundation Hospital
1097 Northwest Blvd., Franklin
Serving the western St. Mary Parish, Franklin Foundation Hospital offers multiple clinics including Women’s Health, Medical Specialties and a Family Care Center in Baldwin. It provides a 22-bed critical access hospital and became the first in the area to offer the LightSpeed 16 CT system. Among its other services, FFH offers maternity services and a newborn nursery and an online medical dictionary, a drug encyclopedia and a physician directory accessible through the website.
Teche Regional Medical Center
1125 Marguerite St., Morgan City
This tobacco-free hospital on the east side of Acadiana serves St. Mary Parish with 157 beds and a 24-hour emergency department. It utilizes a state-of-the-art heart catheterization lab that uses minimally invasive procedures, seven birthing suites and digital mammograms, along with inpatient rehabilitation, bone desitometry, an ICU, a behavioral health unit and a cardiopulmonary department.
Physicians Medical Center
218 Corporate Drive, Houma
Physicians Medical Center (PMC) is located in Houma, the heart of Bayou Country, 50 miles southwest of New Orleans. Opened in 1997 by a group of leading community physicians , PMC was the state's first Ambulatory Surgery Center, (ASC). PMC has since expanded into a 30-bed, multi-specialty, acute care hospital performing in excess of 5,000 procedures annually. The hospital has 6 operating suites, 1 endoscopy suite, 1 cysto suite, 1 Litho suite and several procedure rooms. It also has a full service breast care center and Imaging Department. With over 100 physicians credentialed, specialties include general surgery, pain management, ENT, neurosurgery, urology,orthopedics, anesthesiology, gynecology, bariatric (weight-loss) surgery, ophthalmology, plastic surgery and radiology. In mid-2015, the hospital earned a Medicare rating among the top 50 hospitals in the country for patient satisfaction.
8166 Main St., Houma
Terrebonne General Medical Center, award-winning and nationally recognized health care organization, has built a reputation based on quality and its initiatives to strengthen the health and wellness of the community. The medical center is a nonprofit acute care facility, offering a complete range of services such as the Accredited Chest Pain Center which was recognized by the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care (SCPS) for its world-class cardiology and cardiovascular surgery; a comprehensive Women’s Health Center internationally recognized with top honors as a designated Baby Friendly USA™ hospital- the gold standard in maternity care; outpatient services; surgery center; emergency care services and Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center. Additionally, TGMC provides the Healthy Lifestyles Center, which offers the Community Sports Institute, Health and Sports Performance, Wellness for Life, Workout 360, Inpatient and Outpatient Rehabilitation, Diabetes Management and Weight Management.
Abbeville General Hospital
118 N. Hospital Drive, Abbeville
Abbeville General (AG) has provided care for almost 50 years and boasts 60 beds, an ICU, Interventional Pain Therapy for pain in the lower back and extremities, a labor and delivery unit and surgical services. AG also has an Infusion Therapy Center, Cancer Center through a partnership with Lafayette General, a Sleep Center, as well as Joint Commission certified Primary Care Medical Homes, located in Abbeville, Maurice, and Erath. The newly renovated Emergency Department encompasses over 9,000 sq. ft. and operates with a “Forward Progression Philosophy,” for a better patient experience. Among recent awards earned is the coveted Top Performer Award by the Joint Commission for Pneumonia and Surgical Care.
Abrom Kaplan Memorial Hospital
1310 W 7th St., Kaplan
In June, 2015, Abrom Kaplan Memorial Hospital became the newest affiliate to join the Lafayette General Health system. The full-service, general acute-care facility is licensed for 35 beds. Services include pediatrics, general surgery, (including laparoscopic), lab services, digital radiology, CT scanning, digital mammography, ultrasound, endoscopic and colonoscopy procedures, physical rehabilitation, home health, inpatient psychiatric services and extended stay. For two consecutive years, Abrom Kaplan was named among the Top 20 Critical Access Hospitals in the Country in Financial Stability by the National Rural Health Association.
If you know of a great regional hospital that didn't get included on the list, let us know. Our staff makes every effort to be as comprehensive as possible, but our hospital guide is always evolving and changing. Email the managing editor, firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or to be updated in our database.
TOUGHEST CASE: SAVING A PREMATURE BABY
Dr. Kenneth Falterman
Women’s and Children’s Hospital
For Dr. Kenneth Falterman, his most difficult case involved a baby girl who weighed only 12 ounces. In the human heart there is something called the ductus arteriosus – a blood vessel in the chest close to the heart that is supposed to close spontaneously after birth.
Unfortunately this particular baby was born extremely preterm and required surgical closure of her ‘patent’ (or ‘open’) ductus arteriosus, which, if left opened, could be harmful to the heart and lungs. The surgery to close the ductus arteriosus is long and difficult, but it was imperative in order to save the baby girl from suffering, and save her heart and lungs long enough for her to recover in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
Dr. Falterman describes this journey, not as ‘life-changing,’ but as a “reaffirming event in which you know you must be absolutely focused, precise and at the top of your game to accomplish your goal without error … then you can breathe again.” He attributes much of his success to a fully functional and supportive team of pediatric specialists, saying, “A pediatric surgeon can’t work in a vacuum.”
Dr. Falterman says he picked pediatric general surgery because of its skill-level and the for the reward he gets by knowing that parents have entrusted their children in his hands. He considers it a great compliment, and rewarding on both a personal and professional level. He enjoys practicing at Women’s and Children’s Hospital in Lafayette, not only for its safe, friendly and clean environment, but also for the community that the hospital has created. Dr. Falterman says, “My hospital is not too big and not too small, which makes it easier to provide efficient and excellent quality care.”
Dr. Falterman grew up in New Orleans, raised by parents who came from Acadiana, both of whom spoke French. He attended University of New Orleans for his bachelor of science degree, and Louisiana State University Medical Center for his medical degree, followed by an internship at Duke and a surgical fellowship at The Children’s Hospital of Pittsburg.
He says the reason he wanted to stay local to practice medicine was to ensure that “families would not have to travel away to get excellent care for their babies and children.” Dr. Falterman practices in Lafayette to start and grow the number of pediatric specialty trained physicians in Acadiana, which is why he moved to Lafayette in 1999 after 19 years at Ochsner and Children’s Hospital in New Orleans.
Dr. Falterman attributes his success as a pediatric general surgeon to the hardworking and interdependent teams that he works with: “Neonatal and Pediatric Intensivist along with Pediatric Anesthesiologist, Pediatric Oncologist, and nursing support must be part of this team…this work does teach one the necessity of team play!”
Dr. Falterman appreciates the local community in Lafayette and at Women’s and Children’s Hospital, and so works everyday towards adding to this community in a positive way through his passionate treatment of the children and the babies within the Lafayette area, to ensure they don’t have to go far for excellent professional care. - By Lani Griffiths