SHREVEPORT, La – It’s Doctor’s Day – the day to show gratitude to doctors helping save lives around the world.
It was first observed in 1933, marking the first birthday of a doctor using ether anesthesia. A year after the start of the pandemic, it is particularly poignant to celebrate doctors and recent medical advances.
The community of northwest Louisiana is fortunate to have a medical training center. LSU Health Shreveport has over 365 physicians and 516 residents working on campus. The school is growing and the size of the classes too.
Dr GE Ghali, Chancellor of LSU Health Shreveport, said between 50% and 60% of doctors who train at LSU stay in the community. Not only does this give the region a multitude of doctors, but it also gives an economic boost.
“The typical annual operating budget of our Health Sciences Center for the medical schools of the three schools is approximately $ 350 million per year. But the economic impact we have on northern Louisiana each year is about $ 3 billion, ”Ghali said. “We have over 4,500 alumni of the School of Medicine. Among alumni practicing in northern Louisiana, on average, each doctor who practices has an economic impact of approximately $ 2 million per year on the local economy.
Having these LSU Health-trained doctors in the community is so valuable that the state legislature is considering giving them an added incentive to stay, Ghali said.
“One of the things the legislature is considering is creating loan programs that will defer loan payments and actually cover loans that doctors might have if they choose to practice in some of the rural parishes we have in. Louisiana. So these are some of the things that various astute lawmakers are considering as we move forward in this rapidly approaching legislative session, ”he said.
Ghali said it was unusual to have a Level 1 medical school and trauma center in a community the size of Shreveport-Bossier. They are usually found in cities with more than one million inhabitants.