Veteran dies after being turned away from VA medical center in an ambulance

Malcom Randall VA Medical Center (Veterans Affairs)

A VA medical center in Florida is being held accountable for the death of a veteran, refusing him care until he could show his service record.

The Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General released a report, confirming that Malcom Randall VA Medical Center refused care to a dying veteran in the summer of 2020.

The denial of care took place because the staff could not confirm the veteran’s military service record.

According to WCJB, the patient was then taken to UF Health Shands where the patient died.

The 60-year-old veteran was transported by Alachua County Fire Rescue EMT units to the VA Medical Center.

The patient was reported to be unconscious and likely in need of intubation.

However, EMTs could not confirm the man was a veteran, despite him having been to the hospital before. In lieu of lack of confirmation, he was sent elsewhere.

10 hours later the patient died of septic shock, heart failure, pneumonia, and kidney inflammation at Shands according to the death certificate.

The IG chastised the ER staff in the report.

“Emergency departments ‘must never turn away an ambulatory patient or a patient who has arrived by ambulance; a medical screening exam must always be performed,’” stated the inspector general.

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