"Do I feel like things could or should have been done differently? I do." said Board of Trustee Vice Chairman Neal Gold reluctantly.
Westlake Regional Hospital in Columbia opened its doors in 1980, now those doors are in danger of closing. The facility filed for Chapter 9 Bankruptcy in early August due to the hospital owing around $20 million in debt.
"There was clearly over staffing. There were two many management layers. It was obvious over time they were having to borrow to just meet operational costs. That should have been a red flag for them." added Gold.
Now acting as CEO, Gold reassured since the board of trustees took over management of the hospital things have been running more efficiently, and plans to start paying off whatever debt possible are in the works. One of the creditors owed is Adair County. $1.7 million to be exact, and taxpayers would like for that debt to be the number one priority.
"The hospital we have, the staff there sucks. They are very crude to their patients. They don't treat you right but they want their money. We want ours back too." said an upset Penny Pierce.
"The ones that were supposed to be handling the taxpayers money, why didn't they investigate and see why it was running down the hole? Somebody wasn't doing their job." added an angry Orby Yarberry.
Gold says though cuts were made last fall, things have since stabilized and the facility is actually in the process of hiring.