The deadly floodwaters in Louisiana are receding but more rain is expected this week. There have been 13 reported deaths from high waters and 40,000 homes have been damaged by floodwaters, according to news reports. Thousands of people are currently displaced and living in shelters. The federal government declared a major disaster in the state, and 30 parishes are to be declared flood disasters. NACHC has reached out to our friends at the Louisiana Primary Care Association (LPCA) and learned that while their Baton Rouge building is unaffected, dozens of employees have been impacted, including three people whose homes remain underwater. LPCA is still trying to assess the damage to the FQHC community, but estimates that, based on reports from the field, about 100 employees from health centers in the area have lost their homes. LPCA is working with a emergency preparedness consultant. Any inquiries or requests to help should be directed to Jasmine Watts. NACHC’s partner Direct Relief is working to fulfill urgent requests of medicines and medical supplies from health centers and providers throughout central Louisiana. Here’s what we know so far:
Among the health centers affected is RKM Primary Care, a FQHC under Primary Care Providers for a Healthy Feliciana, Inc. (PCPFHF), which serves over 20,000 patients at five clinic locations. Three of these sites were affected by flooding and were closed. The health center did manage to open a makeshift clinic outside of their Livingston site, which was damaged by flood water. In Clinton, only two of their providers were able to get to the clinic on Monday to treat patients. Direct Relief has sent the health center their first shipment of supplies, which includ Medical Outreach Backpacks, insulin and a Hurricane Prep Pack.
Even if health centers in area avoided flood damage their service areas have been affected. Among them is Eunice Community Health Center, which reports that 200 people have been displaced and are living in shelters. The health center is currently planning their outreach strategies in addition to treating patients at the clinic. They report that seventy percent of their patients are diabetic and are in need of supplies.
There is also St. Gabriel Community Health Center which operates sites in St. Gabriel and another in Monticello. Both of these sites are operating with minimum staff but have extended their hours. In the immediate area there are 800 homes damaged and about 8,000 people impacted. There is a Red Cross shelter set up across the street in St. Gabriel, where they are performing outreach.
CareSouth is a health center located in Baton Rouge. The health center did not experience any damage but have since depleted medical supplies while responding to community needs and have requested a replenishment from Direct Relief.
Special thanks to Direct Relief for keeping us updated and for their immediate response to help the FQHC community. We will keep you updated.