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Huntsville Memorial Hospital CEO is Out

HMH bringing in Turnaround Specialist

by Walker County News Today staff

At Wednesday night’s Walker County Hospital District meeting, board chair Anne Woodard announced that Shannon Brown had just completed his final day as CEO of Huntsville Memorial Hospital.  Woodard would not give any additional information regarding the nature or circumstances of Brown’s departure.

She also announced that HMH would be bringing in a Chief Restructuring Officer  which hints that the hospital may be facing substantial financial issues.

County Jail Medical Expenses

Two members of the board (chair Anne Woodard and member Dr. David Toronjo) previously met with County Judge Danny Pierce, administrative staff from the Walker County Jail, and Walker County Auditor Patricia Allen to review payments from the Hospital District to the County for jail medical costs.

According to Woodard, a review of the current costs show that the Hospital District is currently overpaying the county for jail medical expenses; the Hospital District has been paying 55% of the costs but should only be paying around 44% based on the new information.

Toronjo pointed out the current procedure(s) for establishing residency of current jail inmates, for determining whether a jail inmate qualifies as “indigent,” and for how medical billing is handled does not conform with a Texas Attorney General ruling.   Toronjo presented three options as possible solutions for board members to consider as discussions with county officials move forward.

Woodard says that both entities are working “as a team” to resolve the issues and that another meeting is set to take place to continue working on a solution.

Update on the 90-Day Termination Letter to HMH

Woodard gave an update on the District’s 90-Day Termination Letter that was issued previously to Huntsville Memorial Hospital:  Brenda Strama, the district’s health care attorney, is still reviewing all of the documents.  The 90 day time period runs until April 9.

Sale of Ella Smither property

During public comment Linda Thompson of the Sam Houston Tea Party asked when the district would release their appraisal of the Ella Smither property to the public.  Both Woodard and board member Jerry Larrison responded that they would not feel comfortable releasing the appraisal until after the purchase contract (with the City of Huntsville) was signed.

Executive Session

The Board met in executive session to consider hiring a part-time administrator with salary and responsibilities.  When they reconvened in open session, no action was taken on the agenda item.

Routine Business

In other routine business, board members voted on a number of items including:

  • Reviewing and approving financial reports
  • Reviewing and paying invoices/bills
  • Reviewing and approving minutes from previous two meetings



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