Doctor Arrested - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

11/30/07 - Lufkin

Doctor Arrested

by Christa Lollis

Nearly 11 years after the fact, a doctor accused of manslaughter in Britain was arrested today, right here in Lufkin. Just after nine this morning U.S. Marshals were at Woodland Heights, arresting a Lufkin doctor. Priya Ramnath, a citizen of India, and in the United States on a work visa, is now in the Angelina County jail. "This incident this morning with the US Marshals apparently relates to an event that occurred for Dr. Ramnath 10 or 11 years ago now in England. Apparently and obviously that happened well before she arrived in Texas and certainly before she arrived at Woodland Heights," Woodland Heights CEO, Lance Jones explains. 

She is charged with manslaughter, contrary to common law, and accused of giving a patient in Britain a lethal dose of adrenalin in 1998. The patient was only having a bunion removed. East Texas news nine's Stuart Burson spoke with the CEO of Woodland Heights, who says the hospital had no knowledge of her prior record. "No, I'm not aware of all the specifics on that and more honestly Stuart, just not being there 10 or 11 years ago. I hate to even try to speculate on everything that's been involved," Jones said. 

Marshals detained Ramnath this morning and Jones says it happened before the day got started. "No surgeries had occurred this morning. The US Marshals arrived extremely early," he told KTRE. But marshals said that wasn't true. In fact, when they arrived, Ramnath was in the operating room and a patient had already been put under anesthesia. They do believe the surgery was canceled after she was taken into custody.

In 2004 the daughter of the patient that was killed told British media that, "Trying to bring her back to England to face the courts is the one thing that's kept us going." There's no word on whether they know of today's arrest.

Marshals said usually in instances like these no bail is allowed. Now, she awaits her first appearance in federal court next week.

Dr. Ramnath also had privileges at Memorial Health System of East Texas. In a statement, the hospital said that she had only assisted in one procedure and that was six months ago when she first began practicing in Lufkin. Her privileges at Memorial have been suspended pending the outcome of the criminal investigation. Stay tuned to KTRE for the latest information on this case.

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