The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development is providing $30 million to Concordia Parish Hospital Service District #1 to improve access to health care services for rural communities in Concordia Parish, announced State Director Carrie Castille today. The loan from Rural Development will be used to replace the aged Riverland Hospital built in 1964 with a new state-of-art facility in Ferriday.
"Opportunities for rural communities to have safe and adequate hospitals for residents are extremely important for economic prosperity in rural communities," Castille said. "USDA is committed to expanding access to health care facilities that provide a full range of medical services."
The new 87,000-square-foot critical care medical center will have 25 beds and include an emergency department, intensive care unit, diagnostic imaging area, lab, and an area dedicated for surgeries and other in-patient and out-patient care. There will also be a connecting medical office building to house doctor’s offices, administrative, and IT services.
This announcement is in coordination with USDA’s commemoration of National Rural Health Day, which is held annually on the third Thursday of November to focus on the specific health care issues facing rural communities. The Department is investing in 61 projects through the Community Facilities direct loan program. These investments will expand access to health care for approximately 2 million people in 34 states.
In April 2017, President Donald J. Trump established the Interagency Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity to identify legislative, regulatory and policy changes that could promote agriculture and prosperity in rural communities. In January 2018, Secretary Perdue presented the Task Force’s findings to President Trump. These findings included 31 recommendations to align the federal government with state, local and tribal governments to take advantage of opportunities that exist in rural America. Increasing investments in rural infrastructure is a key recommendation of the task force.
To view the report in its entirety, please view the Report to the President of the United States from the Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity (PDF, 5.4 MB). In addition, to view the categories of the recommendations, please view the Rural Prosperity infographic (PDF, 190 KB).
USDA Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities and create jobs in rural areas. This assistance supports infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural areas. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov.