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State Launches Probe Of Hospital's Removal Of Patient Who Died

The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

Gov. Rick Scott's Agency for Health Care Administration said Dec. 28, 2015  it has started an investigation into a Northwest Florida hospital after the high-profile death of a woman who had been forcibly removed from the facility.

AHCA issued a brief statement that said it will investigate whether Calhoun Liberty Hospital "violated any state or federal requirements surrounding last week's incident." The full text follows>

"Today, the Agency for Health Care Administration initiated an investigation into Calhoun Liberty Hospital to determine if the hospital violated any state or federal requirements surrounding last week’s incident at the hospital. The report will be available online for the state investigation once finalized, if violations are found. If the Agency finds that any state or federal laws have been violated Calhoun Liberty Hospital will be held accountable."

The Dec. 21 death of 57-year-old Barbara Dawson drew national attention and spurred allegations about whether she was handled properly. She had gone to the Blountstown hospital for treatment but refused to leave after being discharged, according to police. She collapsed as a police officer took her to a patrol car and was later pronounced dead. A medical examiner said the cause of death was a blood clot in her lungs, according to police and the hospital.

Dawson's family has enlisted the services of the law firm of Parks & Crump in Tallahassee and state Rep. Darryl Rouson, D-St. Petersburg.