(Gadsden, AL - April 19, 2011) Gadsden City Councilman Ben Reed is asking for a state investigation into the Mental Health hospital in his district.
Following several incidents at Moutain View Hospital
, including the escape of hospital patients into neighborhoods near the Scenic Drive hospital
During the closing comments portion of the city council meeting Tuesday, Reed
held up a listing of over 50 calls to the hospital registered by the Gadsden
Police and Fire Departments in a year and a half period.
"There's no real security at the hospital," Reed
says, "and for the safety of their patients, their employees and my residents, I think something needs to happen - quick," he
explained to GadsdenMetro
following the meeting.
Reed is asking Gadsden Police Chief Richard Crouch to request the assistance of Medicaid, DHR, the Alabama Board of Hospitals, and the Alabama Bureau of Investigations to look into the problems with the hospital.
Reed acknowledged that neither state law and the state board of hospitals require MountainView to provide 24-hour security, "but both Riverview and Gadsden Regional provide security and they don't have the problems we do at MountainView."
Reed says a representative of the hospital had apparently been tipped-off to what he was going to say about the hospital and was in attendance at the council meeting.
asked that I meet with him to discuss the issue," he
says, "that's better than we've gotten before when we've brought the problems up."
says "I think our residents are getting tired of escapees hiding under their cars, in their houses and buildings on their property.
impassioned plea for the investigation and changes at the hospital concluded with the warning, "When it comes to the safety of my people, there's no telling how far I'll go," indicating this plea is just the beginning of his
efforts to affect changes at the residential mental health facility.