UPDATE: Board members for the now-closed Cozby-Germany Hospital in Grand Saline are considering legal action against two doctors who shut down the hospital Thursday night with about 10 minutes' warning.
"They just shut it down," board member Tom Elliot said about MNM Management Co. led by two area doctors."This thing has been kind of teetoring for a while... They were making demands of the hospital board and we weren't willing to do it."
Cozby-Germany is a 52-bed acute care hospital, and is the only hospital in Van Zandt County, Elliot said.
Board members were to meet with MNM Management Wednesday night, but only one of the two doctors appeared, Elliot said. When board members met again Thursday, they learned at about 6:50 p.m. that MNM Management was filing for bankruptcy and closing the hospital, he said. By 7 p.m., Cozby-Germany closed, and its only three patients left the facility - two were discharged, and one patient was transported to a Tyler hospital.
Elliot said MNM Management's contract stipulates that it must provide at least six months' notice before closing Cozby-Germany.
MNM took over the hospital in March, after hospital board members paid previous owner Dr. Tariq Mahmood $250,000 in a buyout deal, Elliot said. Mahmood owns six hospitals in Texas, but his hospitals in Terrell and Center have closed because of delinquent property taxes and a federal indictment for health care fraud against him.
"We are considering some action. We have been in touch with the Medicare folks in Tyler," Elliott. "The bottom line is the hospital board spent a quarter-million dollars to fight Dr. Mahmood and get him out of the hospital, and I can tell you the board is now in debt. But we felt that if we didn't do something to protect this hospital and this community, we weren't going to get it replaced."
Board members are immediately turning their attention to reopening Cozby-Germany. Monday morning, representatives from Missouri-based Noble Health Care will tour the hospital, as board members try to woo a new health care management firm.
"We're just going to start resurrecting," Elliot said.
GRAND SALINE (KYTX) - Cozby-Germany hospital in Grand Saline has closed its doors.
According to KMOO 99.9, the hospital was forced to close their doors Thursday night.
Officials say Cozby-Germany was not in compliance with Medicare guidelines and will be closed until those guidelines can be established.
The hospital has ten days to respond with their plan for meeting Medicare guidelines.