BOWIE, TX (KAUZ) - The journey to sell the Bowie Memorial Hospital has come to an end.
Hospital officials signed documents to transfer the ownership of the medical facility to the Hashmi Group at Monday's board meeting.
While the board members celebrated the closing and prepare to write the final chapter of what was known as Bowie Memorial Hospital, for the Hashmi Group and the Central Hospital of Bowie, it is only the beginning.
The board room was full for the closing of the sale, even the new owner's family came out.
The Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Central Hospital of Bowie, Dr. Hasan Hashmi, said this is a great thing, and although it has been a long process, he feels it is nice to reach the first milestone.
The next step is getting the required licenses to operate.
He said it is hard to predict when those will be finalized, but he estimates it will happen sometime in early fall.
As for admitting patients, he expects that to happen at the end of August, early September.
Of course, staffing is already on the doctor's mind, he said that process has already started.
"We interviewed about six or eight people that will be the critical requirement at this time," said Dr. Hashmi.
He plans on taking on some of those people and talked with some former employees at the meeting.
Those employees said they are excited about the re-opening and are hopeful for what the future holds.
They believe the Hashmi family cares about the community, and they have already sent in their resumes.
The Hashmi family is also excited about Bowie's future.
"We want to make certain that all the local businesses that can be supported by the hospital are supported and that there are new businesses coming to town so that it is a vibrant city," said Dr. Hashmi.
The dissolution of the hospital board is also on the agenda for the Bowie hospital authority, but Dr. Hashmi wants to make sure of one thing before the dissolve takes place.
"As the process of change of ownership goes on, and as it is processed through the state, through Medicare agencies and in various medical agencies, there is a signing officer from the previous ownership," said Dr. Hashmi.
Hospital officials said this will not be a problem, and they assure someone will be authorized to sign on behalf of the board.
The process to dissolve the board has already started.
Hospital officials and their attorney had a meeting with the city on Monday.
Bowie city councilors have to approve the ordinance for the dissolution of the board.
The hospital authority hopes this will be completed by August.