A patient who escaped a general medical ward to live on the roof of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital for three days last week had been waiting 24 hours for a psychiatrist to come from another hospital. Stuart Joy, 40, was admitted early on April 2 after showing signs of paranoia and threatening to leap from a second-floor window of the hospital. He walked out of the ward at 1 am on April 4 in his pyjamas but with no money, no clothes and no passport. Staff alerted police nearly five hours later and Mr Joy was found by hospital staff on the roof on the morning of Sunday, April 7. Senior hospital manager Helen Tang Chui-sum said the hospital had no psychiatric unit. 'We noticed he had some mental symptoms and we had arranged for him to see a psychiatrist. We had to get a psychiatrist from Kowloon Hospital, but the time was not right and then Mr Joy went away,' Ms Tang said. 'The ward doctor had prescribed some medication,' she said. Mr Joy's friend brought him to the hospital at 7 am on April 2 after Mr Joy had locked himself in his hotel bathroom, saying he thought people wanted to kill him. While waiting in casualty, he threatened to leap from a window, then left the hospital. He was found wandering near his hotel several hours later, when he was brought back to the hospital and admitted late on April 2. Ms Tang said she did not know how much information had been passed from the accident and emergency to the ward doctor. 'We are not sure how serious his symptoms were,' she said. Health services legislator Michael Ho Mun-ka said Mr Joy's actions should have alerted staff to call a psychiatrist quickly. 'They decided to keep him in a general ward. That was a wrong decision,' he said. 'There should be perhaps a small psychiatric unit or some area suitable for people who are mentally unsound or extremely emotional. 'Hospital staff [in a general ward] can't keep on watching with both doors open,' he said. 'If they had his history . . . there should have been urgent consultations as he was admitted. 'The doctors should have known the setting was not suitable for mentally ill people.' Ms Tang also said the roof door could not be locked because it was a fire exit. Asked if an alarm system triggered by breaking glass could be fitted, she said the hospital was 'still looking at this'. 'The whole security team is looking into this matter,' she said. Kwong Wah Hospital chief of service Dr Yip Wai-chun has said that the hospital's roof is now locked, with a key kept nearby in case of fire, following the death of a patient some years ago. But Ms Tang said she did not know what other hospitals did.