Louisiana Health and Hospitals Secretary Alan Levine plans to hire outside consultants to review a proposal by Louisiana State University to build a $1.2 billion hospital in New Orleans in partnership with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Plans call for the construction of a 484-bed teaching hospital downtown with the proceeds from $800 million of revenue bonds. Financing also would include $300 million from the Louisiana Recovery Authority and $100 million from federal grants the state is seeking as compensation for damages to Charity Hospital as a result of Hurricane Katrina in August 2005.

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