Surgeons and physicians at Forest Park Medical Center were paid large sums to encourage patients to receive treatment. In West Texas, Shawn Henry referred patients to Forest Park Medical Center, knowing the Dallas Hospital was an inconvenient five hours away. The bankrupt and now defunct Forest Park Medical Center (FPMC) even went as far as paying for patient’s travel and lodging expenses just so they would agree to be seen at FPMC. In order to ensure your healthcare organization is engaging in practices in the best interest of the patient, be sure to have a compliant Conflict of Interest program.
In addition to Henry, many doctors at this hospital were involved in the operation which spanned many years. In an effort to earn a quick buck, these doctors lost sight of their principles and integrity and led their organization into corruption. A cofounder of the hospital “was quoted in court documents in the case as saying, 'We need more bodies on the table,' about surgeries at Forest Park Medical Center” (Krause, DallasNews). Seeing patients as numbers instead of individuals who require unique care is a frightening practice. Surgery is a very invasive process as well as a financial burden, trying to get “more bodies on the table,” puts anyone seen there at risk.
Due to financial troubles and rampant corruption, the medical center ultimately failed. Putting patients at risk by means of encouraging surgery consultations and being blinded by money, these doctors failed their Hippocratic Oath.
A Conflict of Interest program in place, such as the solution offered by HealthDox, would have kept this hospital running ethically. HealthDox COI requires payments to be reviewed by a board, enforcing a sense of accountability. Additionally, new requirements allow anyone to access information pertaining to out of network doctor payments, giving patients the power to determine if their doctors have any potential conflict of interests at hand. Learn how HealthDox COI can keep your organization ethically sound and in business for many years to come, request a demo here!