Cooper Green Mercy Hospital Jefferson County

Joe Songer/The Birmingham News

Jefferson County is taking another step in the ongoing process of ending inpatient care at Cooper Green Mercy Health Service.

WBRC-TV reports ( that Jefferson County commissioners are scheduled to vote Thursday on a plan to sell eight psychiatric beds to Gadsden Regional Medical Center.

The county commission earlier decided to quit admitting patients to the Birmingham hospital because of the cost to taxpayers in Jefferson County, which is both bankrupt because of its sewer debt and struggling to balance its main operating budget.

The chief executive officer of a Birmingham hospital vows to fight a decision to place her on administrative leave.

Cooper Green Mercy Hospital CEO Sandral Hullet was placed on administrative leave as the county hospital ends in-patient care for the poor and uninsured.

The hospital, operated by Jefferson County, announced the layoffs of 200 workers earlier this month.

Opponents of a decision to close the in-patient care unit at Cooper Green Mercy Hospital in Jefferson County hope a visit by the Rev. Al Sharpton will bring national attention to the issue.

Sharpton's visit to Birmingham on Friday will include attendance at a forum and rally against the hospital's closure.

The county commission voted last month to close the inpatient unit and emergency room at the county owned hospital.

Instead, the county wants to establish a new model featuring an urgent care facility and two clinics focused on preventive care.