Sheriff Takes Over Hospital in Unprecedented Move
In an unprecedented move, the Milam County Sheriff’s Department took control of Central Texas Hospital near Waco due to patient endangerment and billing fraud. The nonprofit corporation who owns the building obtained a temporary injunction due to recent reports that Dr. Tariq Mahmood, the owner of the facility, may attempt to destroy, hide or alter medical records. Case Against Mahmood In court documents, the nonprofit agency that owns the building claimed that Mahmood reported to them that he was closing the hospital himself, and that the closure was a breach of the lease agreement. Because Governor Rick Perry initiated an investigation into hospitals owned by Mahmood, court documents indicate that closing the Cameron facility could allow the doctor to destroy or alter medical records, as well as hospital property. Court Appoints Sheriff as Overseer The courts agreed that there was a risk of property or documents being destroyed by the doctor should the hospital close. The judge appointed Sheriff David Greene as the overseer of the property, giving him authority to contract with necessary personnel to provide necessary care to patients. Sheriff Greene contacted the Little River Healthcare System to operate the ER in the hospital. Keeps Hospital Open The court’s maneuver is a way to keep the hospital open, a necessity as it is the only hospital in the area to serve patients. Some describe the sheriff takeover as a form of “receivership,” in which a court appointed entity oversees the business to protect interests temporarily. An attorney for Dr. Mahmood denied that the doctor planned to close the hospital. When someone is injured or died due to patient endangerment, a malpractice claim may be in order. Contact Dallas-Fort Worth lawyers at Frenkel & Frenkel to schedule a free initial consultation regarding patient endangerment where injuries may have been caused or worsened by someone’s negligence.