A disturbing hidden camera video was just released showing nurses laughing at a World War II veteran as he takes his last breaths.
An 11Alive investigation uncovered hidden camera video catching nursing home staff laughing while an elderly patient dies in front of them. The incident happened at the Northeast Atlanta Health and Rehabilitation in 2014, but the video was recently released as part of a lawsuit filed by the family.
... The deceased patient is 89-year-old James Dempsey, a decorated World War II veteran from Woodstock, Georgia.
... The video shows the veteran calling for help six times before he goes unconscious while gasping for air. State records show nursing home staff found Dempsey unresponsive at 5:28 am. It took almost an hour for the staff to call 911 at 6:25a.m.
When a different nurse does respond, she fails to check any of his vital signs. Nuckles says she would have reprimanded the nurse for the way she responded to Dempsey. She called the video “sick.”
When nurses had difficulty getting Dempsey’s oxygen machine operational during, you can hear Nuckles and others laughing.
Too often, veterans who risked everything for our freedom do not get the proper medical care that they deserve. While this incident occurred at a private nursing home facility, it reminds us of the painful reality concerning Veterans Affairs (VA) hospitals, which have become notorious for providing inadequate care -- and that's if the patients even make it into the hospital in the first place. Due to incompetence in VA administration, more than 300,000 veterans died in recent years before their applications for care were even processed.
The VA is also rife with corruption. An audit obtained by USA Today found that employees at more than 100 VA medical centers falsified appointment data to hide evidence of delayed medical care.
But that's just the tip of the iceberg. More from USA Today:
USA TODAY reviewed hundreds of confidential VA records, including about 230 secret settlement deals never before seen by the public. The records from 2014 and 2015 offer a narrow window into a secretive, long-standing government practice that allows the VA to cut short employees’ challenges to discipline.
In at least 126 cases, the VA initially found the workers’ mistakes or misdeeds were so serious that they should be fired. In nearly three-quarters of those settlements, the VA agreed to purge negative records from personnel files or give neutral or positive references to prospective employers.
In 70 of the settlements, the VA banned employees from working in its hospitals for years — or life — even as the agency promised in most cases to conceal the specific reasons why.
On the campaign trail, President Trump vowed to reform the VA -- but the D.C. swamp isn't making it easy. During the first days of his presidency Trump
fired a VA official for corruption. But within months, that same official was returned to work by the VA after he filed an appeal.