- Associated Press - Tuesday, June 3, 2014

CROWLEY, La. (AP) - The former American Legion Hospital has unveiled its new sign, bearing the name Acadia General Hospital.

The hospital is now under the management of the Lafayette General Health System.

“It’s tremendous,” said A.J. Jones, who represented American Legion Post 15. “I think it’s going to be a godsend to the community and the whole Acadia Parish. It’s a blessing.”

Acadia Post 15 of the America Legion took over the hospital in 1929. The organization owned the hospital for more than eight decades.


“It was a couple of doctors running it. One retired and one moved away,” Jones said. “It left no health care in Crowley, and Acadia Post 15 purchased the building and it went from there.”

Lafayette General Health began negotiating a deal to take over managing the hospital about six months ago. Heather Harper, who is the current chief operating officer for South Tennessee Medical and Emerald Hodgson Hospital, was hired as Acadia General Hospital’s CEO. She’ll start the new job June 16.

“Today marks a new beginning for this hospital and the people of this entire parish,” Lafayette General President and CEO David Callecod said during the Monday morning press conference to unveil the sign. “Together, we are going to make positive changes to serve the greater good of the community.”

In compliance with Joint Commission regulations, all employees at the Crowley hospital had to re-apply for their jobs in order to be hired into the health system, hospital system spokesman Daryl Cetnar said.

So far, 295 of the 307 employees have been rehired, Cetnar said Monday.

He said a reduction in staff is not expected.

The Advertiser reports (http://bit.ly/1rGTBde ) the new acquisition will include a $3.3 million renovation.

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Information from: The Advertiser, http://www.theadvertiser.com