Shocking footage shows security guard tackle mentally ill woman at Queensland hospital

Footage has emerged of a security guard tackling a mentally ill female patient at a southeast Queensland Hospital.

The ABC reports Toni Burcher, who has mental illness, was trying to leave Logan Hospital, near Brisbane, with her husband Robert Cowling.

In the video, the pair can be seen trying to leave past the lifts but a security guard runs in front of them.

Ms Burcher tries to avoid him but the guard appears to lunge forward and crash tackle her to the ground, the impact making her hit her head on the corner of a concrete wall.

Mr Cowling said his wife went “flying backwards” and the impact with the concrete split her head open.

“She started screaming out in agony and pain straight away,” he said.

The impact reportedly left a six-centimetre gash in her head, which required staples.

He was then pinned to the ground by other security guards for what he said was about two minutes before being allowed to help his injured wife.

The man appears tackle Ms Burcher before another security guard intervenes. Source: ABC News
The man appears tackle Ms Burcher before another security guard intervenes. Source: ABC News

"They wouldn't let me up and I'm saying, 'just let me go to my wife, I just need to calm her down, I need to comfort her, just let me go'," he said.

"One of the guards holding me down actually told the nurses to go away, to leave."

But Logan-Bayside Health Network Jacinta Powell said Ms Burcher was “accidentally injured” when a security guard lost his balance.

"This is unfortunate and we are sorry for the distress this has caused the patient," Dr Powell said.

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"There is much to be learned from this incident which will be used in training our contracted security staff into the future."

In a letter to Ms Burcher, she said MSS security needed to be contacted directly.

Queensland Health and MSS Security have been contacted for comment.

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