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Letter tio the Editor Wednesday, May 20, 2009 in The Midweek

Hospital leaders lose credibility, confidence

To the EDITOR:

The public hearing May 8 on the proposed closure of the mental health unit (Center for Behavioral Health) at Kishwaukee Community Hospital produced overwhelming support from many segments of the community to keep it open, including testimony from psychiatrists, mental health counselors, clergy and law enforcement. I hope those presentations will make an impact on the Illinois Health Facilities Planning Board and its hearing officer.

Conspicuous by their absence that day were three key players in the closure of the mental health unit: Hospital CEO Kevin Poorten, Hospital board chair Michael Cullen and the closed unit’s medical director Dr. Fatima Hadi. I heard a rumor later they were all three too busy, supervising a cleaning crew readying the CBH unit for a re-opening after being shut down since last Nov. 22. In truth, it was suddenly opened over the weekend and a few patients quietly placed in it. But for how long? (Only a week)

Seemingly concerned with “allocation of resources” and cost of operation the board is sadly guilty of gross overspending in their own offices. The recently released 2008 IRS data for non-profits (Form 990) shows the board paying CEO Poorten over $600,000 salary a year plus an expense account and related benefits that puts him close to $700,000. Looking down the list, one finds hospital administrator Brad Copple being paid some $350,000 and other vice presidents not too far behind. Plus, their bill for outside legal services was $777,000 in just one year. These figures are a matter of public record at www.guidestar.org.

It appears that the hospital board’s interest in paying exorbitant wages to their executives and legal fees to keep them out of trouble far surpasses their desire to provide care for mental health patients. Is there any way this board can ever regain credibility and the confidence of the public and the mental health patient/provider community? It is looking more doubtful with every new move they make. But we have until June 25 to turn in more documentation and testimony on behalf of retaining inpatient mental health care in our county. You can go to the Web site www.dekalbcountylife.com (click on Mental Health) to find out how.

Barry Schrader
DeKalb

Kish Hospital gets state approval to close the Mental Health Unit

Mental Health Advocate- October 2009

Dr. Foroutan Letter to the State

the DeKalb County Citizens for Better Mental health Care

State decision on mental health unit postponed

PUBLIC HEARING TRANSCRIPT

MENTAL HEALTH ADVOCATE

Letter to the Editor 1

Letter to the Editor 2

Letter to the Editor 3

Letter to the Editor 4

Letter to the Editor 5

Letter to the Editor 6

Letter to the Editor 7

Letter to the Editor 8

Hospital execs' salaries revealed

Letter to the Editor 9

Article 1

Article 2

Article 3

Article 4

Article 5

NAMI Letter

Highlights of Application

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The columnist can be reached via email at :

barry815sbcglobal.net

or by snailmail at:

Barry Schrader
PO Box 851
DeKalb, Ill 60115