Boston, MA– Boston Children’s Hospital is suing a Saudi Arabian prince for failing to follow through on his commitments, reports UniversalHub. According to the hospital, Prince Abdelilah bin Abdelaziz bin Abdulrahman Al Faisal Al Saud agreed to pay for the costly care of a baby "Jane Doe" in the ICU unit with a very rare disease, and he now owes the hospital $3.5 million dollars.
The Saudi Arabian child, now two years old, needed the drug Sprinraza to battle type 1 spinal muscular atrophy, a genetic disease that affects muscle strength and movement. This treatment is not available in Saudi Arabia. Prince Abdelilah heard of the child's condition through media reports and contacted her family with an offer to pay the full cost of treatment. The extremely expensive drug and related health care costs for the child totaled over $4 million from November 2017 to the present.
The hospital’s lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Boston yesterday, stated that the prince gave an initial payment toward the care of the unnamed “Jane Doe.” The first payment was made by the Saudi prince’s Egyptian-born doctor, Hamdy Dawoud, in the form of a check for $750,000. Afterward, all hospital bills have gone unpaid, despite hundreds of attempts to contact the prince.
The suit alleges that Prince Abdelilah even visited the toddler in Boston Children’s Hospital after the first payment was received. He promised the child's family that he would continue to fund her treatment, but he left the hospital without submitting another payment. The prince often visits Brigham and Women’s Hospital for his own care, so he is frequently in Boston.
Ramy Ibrahim, an International Patient Coordinator at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, stated that he is involved "because the guarantor is a member of the Saudi Royal Family." Ibrahim coordinates health care for the prince’s family and friends. Dr. Camp, a thoracic surgeon at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, also coordinates health care for the prince. Camp said: “He (the prince) is entirely serious about paying the cost personally, and has the means.”
The young girl is still a patient a Boston Children's, and is now doing well enough that she is no longer in the ICU. However, her care continues to be costly, and should Boston Children's run out of patience, it's unlikely that other U.S. medical providers will take her on, given the prince's failure to pay Boston Children's.
Image via Wikimedia Commons / JosephBarillari