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Acadia CEO criticized at previous post

Bangor Daily News, September 13, 2010

The blast of criticism being leveled at David Proffitt, CEO of The Acadia Hospital, is nothing new.

Angry complaints about employee and patient safety were brought before Maine lawmakers during Proffitt’s four-year tenure as superintendent of the state-run Riverside Psychiatric Center in Augusta, the position he held immediately before coming to The Acadia Hospital.

His professional judgment and educational credentials were questioned. A number of staff members left the hospital for less embattled working conditions.

Proffitt has come under fire in recent weeks from current and former Acadia Hospital employees who say the incidence and severity of staff injuries have risen since he initiated a policy that essentially eliminates the use of mechanical and physical restraints with mentally ill patients who become violent.

Others have taken aim at Proffitt’s administrative skills, criticizing an authoritarian leadership style they say has resulted in the erosion of employee morale and the loss of key clinicians and administrators.