The Clarion-Ledger, Mississippi's main newspaper, reports today on a courageous psychiatrist, Dr. Stept, who allegedly was forced from his job at Mississippi State Hospital at Whitfield for refusing to discharge dangerous patients:
In a quest to reduce long-term beds, state mental health officials are releasing some psychotic and potentially violent patients, says a psychiatrist who was transferred after he said he refused to follow those plans.
"I was asked to discharge patients I thought should not be discharged.
"I felt they were too psychotic."
In fact, some of these patients had "killed people in psychotic states," he said.
The psychiatrist said he refused to discharge a patient in 2007 for medical reasons, telling Whitfield officials if they wanted the patient discharged, the clinical director would have to sign the papers.
Days after this, Stept said he was told he was being transferred to another building.
Not long after this, Whitfield officials threatened to bring him before the peer review committee without telling him why, he said. "When I called and said I was retiring, the process of bringing me before a peer review committee was dropped."
I worked at Whitfield from mid-2006 to mid-2007. I was part-time and wasn't aware any of this was going on. I don't know Dr. Stept.