HP Doctor in Forest Park Medical Case Released From Prison

Highland Park anesthesiologist Richard Toussaint, co-founder of the now-defunct Forest Park Medical Center, has obtained an early release from prison after being sentenced to five years for his part in the $200 million fraud case the hospital was embroiled in.

People Newspapers’ sister publication D CEO found that Toussaint was freed on Jan. 18 through the Bureau of Prisons’ First Step Release program.

Toussaint, 61, was ordered to pay more than $82.9 million in restitution and was sentenced to five-and-a-half years in prison in August 2020.

At the time, he was already serving a 41-month federal prison sentence for a separate health care fraud conviction. In March 2018, he pleaded guilty to his involvement in the Forest Park Medical case, admitting to one count of conspiracy to pay health care bribes and kickbacks and one count of illegal remuneration under the Travel Act.

Toussaint admitted to collaborating with co-defendant Dr. Wade Neal Barker, a bariatric surgeon, to launch Forest Park Medical Center, a physician-owned hospital for bariatric and spinal surgery patients, in 2008, and then working with hospital manager Alan Andrew Beauchamp, Barker, and others to lure patients with high-reimbursing, out-of-network private insurance to the now-defunct hospital by paying surgeons for referrals.

In 2019, Medical City Dallas opened a new heart and spine hospital in the previously dormant location.  

Read more about Toussaint’s release in Will Maddox’s update.

Bethany Erickson

Bethany Erickson, Digital Editor at People Newspapers, cut her teeth on community journalism, starting in Arkansas. Recently, she's taken home a few awards for her writing, including first place for her tornado coverage from the National Newspapers Association's 2020 Better Newspaper Contest, a Gold award for Best Series at the 2018 National Association of Real Estate Editors journalism awards, a 2018 Hugh Aynesworth Award for Editorial Opinion from the Dallas Press Club, and a 2019 award from NAREE for a piece linking Medicaid expansion with housing insecurity. She is a member of the Education Writers Association, the Society of Professional Journalists, the National Association of Real Estate Editors, the News Leaders Association, the News Product Alliance, and the Online News Association. She doesn't like lima beans, black licorice or the word synergy. You can reach her at [email protected].

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