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Letter: Recent VA hospital failures should have consequences

Recent VA hospital failures should have consequences

The story of possible infections through use of improperly cleaned scopes and deliberate reuse of syringes at the Buffalo VA Medical Center is beyond malfeasance; it’s criminal. Are there criminal statutes applicable? Were they applied at the VA? What roles can the federal attorney, New York State attorney general and Erie County district attorney play? Don’t people care anymore?

Such criminals must be subject to outside investigation and possible prosecution. Moreover, licensed medical professionals are subject to professional sanctions and legal liability. Were the individuals (professional and non-professional) at the VA subject to sanctions, loss of license and/or criminal charges? There should be mandatory prison sentences of 10 years for anyone found guilty.

Less the public believe such malfeasance is limited to the VA medical system, don’t delude yourself. Bad behavior is evident across public and private medical providers in the United States and Canada.

I have been in the VA medical system for decades and am satisfied with my medical team. However, I take nothing for granted. As a wonderful nurse at Massachusetts General Hospital advised me, you have to be your own best advocate! People in hospitals slip through the cracks every day. Many with severe consequences.

Read hospital reviews! Become knowledgeable, talk to your medical providers and, most important, be your own best advocate.

Ron Guido

Orchard Park

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