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Sunday, January 22, 2017
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Panelist Bio


David Hood
Senior Healthcare Policy Analyst Public Affairs Research Council

Mr. Hood’s areas of focus include coverage for the uninsured, the charity hospital system, Medicaid financing and budget, financing and delivery of mental health care, the long-term care system and other topic areas.

David Hood served as cabinet secretary of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH) for six years from 1998-2004. He retired in 2004 from a 26-year career in public healthcare administration. Well-respected as a reform-minded government administrator, Mr. Hood developed strategies for more efficient use of tax dollars by minimizing waste and fraud, deploying new technologies and utilizing private sector solutions wherever possible.

During Mr. Hood’s tenure as Secretary, DHH achieved a number of far-reaching reforms, including introduction of the highly successful Louisiana Children’s Health Insurance Program that expanded numbers of low-income children with health care coverage from 320,000 in 1998 to 620,000 by 2003.. Today more than 90 percent of low-income children in Louisiana have health coverage.

Another key reform was a large-scale reorganization of Louisiana Medicaid to assure access to primary medical care for children and adults. An existing program with 40,000 enrollees in rural parishes was redesigned in 2001 and expanded statewide. By 2003 more than 1,600 primary care physicians were providing medical homes for 700,000 Medicaid recipients, including 600,000 children. The program, called Medicaid CommunityCARE, enables patients to select a physician of their choice who will be responsible for all aspects of primary and preventive care, as well as coordination of inpatient and specialty treatment. The program improves health outcomes and saves money by avoiding unnecessary hospitalization and emergency room visits.

Mr. Hood is an alumnus of Louisiana State University. He also served in the U.S. Air Force officer corps.

Current Topic


01/17 - Healthy New Year!

What is the best approach to shedding pounds in a state where cuisine is part of its culture?

PARTICIPATE BY TAKING THE SURVEY HERE!

January heralds the beginning of a New Year and for many, a resolution to practice a healthier lifestyle. According to the 13th annual State of Obesity report, Louisiana now has the highest rate of adult obesity in the country.

So, what is the best approach to shedding pounds in a state where cuisine is part of its culture? Which diet is the most effective for losing weight? What weight loss surgeries are available and how safe are they? And what role does exercise play in the health equation? Louisiana Public Square searches for answers on “Healthy New Year!” Wednesday, January 25 at 7pm on LPB HD and in New Orleans on WLAE. (Recording Tuesday, January 24)

Do you have a story of weight loss challenges and success that you want to share? Be a part of our audience when we record “Healthy New Year!” on Tuesday, January 24 at 7 p.m. at LPB. Email your contact information to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Seating is limited, so reply soon!




Our panelists are:
• Drake Bellanger, M.D., Weight Loss Surgical Centers of Louisiana
• Catherine Champagne, Ph.D. , Pennington Biomedical Research Center
• Stephanie Elwood, Southern University AgCenter
• Rudy Macklin, Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness & Sports


LPB CEO, Beth Courtney and family physician and author, Dr. Rani Whitfield, moderate the discussion.


Louisiana Public Square can also be heard on public radio stations WRKF in Baton Rouge; Red River Radio in Shreveport and Monroe; and WWNO in New Orleans. Check the station websites for schedules.



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Sunday, January 22, 2017
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