VA nursing assistant charged with murdering seven elderly vets.

Clarksburg-VA

"Reta Mays is a former nursing assistant at the Clarksburg VA Medical Center in West Virginia who on Tuesday, July 14, pleaded guilty to killing seven veterans through insulin injections between 2017 and 2018. The second-degree murder charges carry a maximum penalty of life in prison, WCHS reported."  heavy.com

"She also pleaded guilty to assault with the intent to murder another veteran, according to her plea agreement.

The charges against May, 46, were unsealed Tuesday before she pleaded, and followed a two-year federal investigation, West Virginia Metro News reported.

U.S. Attorney Bill Powell told reporters Tuesday that the investigation eventually came down to who was present during one-on-one appointments at which the patients were given insulin. Although Mays denied the charges until July 13, Powell said, “Ultimately it led to her in every instance.”" heavy.com

"According to Mays’ federal charging document, she started working at the VA Hospital in June 2015; she worked the night shift in a surgical ward, dealing with a number of diabetic patients. In June 2018, another employee at the medical center brought concerns to their supervisor about several patients who suffered hypoglycemic deaths — a condition of low blood sugar caused by being injected with too much insulin. An investigation commenced, and Mays was removed from her role, according to the document.

Mays was never authorized or licensed to administer insulin to patients, according to a Department of Justice release."  heavy.com

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Every once in a while there is an incident in which a nurse, a nursing assistant or a janitor is responsible for patients' deaths in hospital.  I remember a case some years ago in France in which a janitor woman killed a number of people by unplugging their life sustaining equipment and then plugging in her vacuum cleaner or floor buffer oblivious to the dying patients in the beds around her.

In this case I would not be surprised to learn that this woman (Reta the Terrible) thought she was helping them on their way.  This would be something like the trope about pneumonia being the old man's friend.

As you can see the Clarksburg VA medical facility is quite large.  I don't use VA medical facilities , being cared for quite well in other ways, but such facilities are extremely important to former military people who are qualified by service connected illness for VA provided health care but are not retired from the military for longevity of service or wounds and who are therefore not a continuing responsibility of the military.  pl

https://heavy.com/news/2020/07/reta-mays-former-va-employee-pleads-guilty-to-multiple-veteran-murders/?utm_source=OneSignal

https://www.clarksburg.va.gov/

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10 Responses to VA nursing assistant charged with murdering seven elderly vets.

  1. Avatar turcopolier says:

    All
    To clarify my last sentence, there are “Former military people” who served for a time and then left the military altogether and have no continuing relationship with the military, and then there are “Retired military people” who served for a long time and were granted the status of “retired.” These people, like me, are still members of the armed forces and continue to be paid albeit at a reduced percentage. they also have access to military posts and facilities for life. The other way to acquire “retired” status is for service connected injuries that are crippling.

  2. Avatar turcopolier says:

    all
    On the subject of VA health care – IMO “retired” officers should not use VA health care except in emergencies. They have other avenues to obtain care through TRICARE or directly from military medical facilities. IMO if they routinely use VA health care they are taking up space that enlisted people usually need more. BTW, I am fully documented for VA health care and have never used it. I have 60% VA evaluated disability.

  3. Avatar scott s. says:

    TP,
    It’s not an unreasonable position to take. As it happens my wife does use the VA, but isn’t a heavy burden on the system (mostly mammogram and annual interview). She started using it because it was difficult to use Tricare for routine care after her retirement. I was more fortunate since I retired first I was in Tricare as a “family member” (used to be called dependent) and had much better access. After she retired I was “grandfathered” in. Of course I was kicked out at 65 now I’m “doctor-less” as getting a PCP to accept new medicare patients in Hawaii is not easy. But I’m not complaining as I know others have a much harder time of it, especially if forced into obamacare policies.

  4. Avatar turcopolier says:

    scotts
    After 65 you can use Tricare for Life as a second payer and Medicare as a primary payer.

  5. Avatar scott s. says:

    TP
    Yes TfL is there, but it doesn’t help the doctor out who is limited to the Medicare approved rate. Though in Hawaii one insurer (HMSA) has the bulk of the business (including Medicare advantage) and they have forced primary care docs into a capitation system so folks like me who are “free agents” may be more attractive. I am in the VA system (20% rating) but like you have never used it. But I do believe VA should mainly be for those with disability ratings, not just those who served but are poor.
    We haven’t had VA horror stories in Hawaii but our history is that for many years we have had a senator on the VA committee (Spark Matsunaga and Daniel Akaka) and they had a priority of taking car of Hawaii vets (really, the legacy of the 4-4-2 and “one puka puka”).

  6. Avatar turcopolier says:

    scotts
    So far as I know you cannot get VA medical on the basis of being poor.

  7. Avatar blum says:

    This is a bit off-topic, Sir, though related to the US military indirectly, thus you may be interested nevertheless.
    I pity the American voter now as I did in 2016. And yes, true, it feels that SST has been non-stop campaigning for Trump since he ascended to the throne which didn’t leave much time for topics not somehow related to the reelection of the ‘cherry blossom king’.
    Glenn Greenwald, House Democrats, Working With Liz Cheney, Restrict Trump’s Planned Withdrawal of Troops From Afghanistan and Germany:
    https://theintercept.com/2020/07/02/house-democrats-working-with-liz-cheney-restrict-trumps-planned-withdrawal-of-troops-from-afghanistan-and-germany

  8. Avatar turcopolier says:

    blum
    We are at a hinge of history. Nothing is as important as defeating the Democrats/Marxists in the coming election.

  9. Avatar Nardami says:

    I thank you for your remarks as a VA employee in Boston of 10 years. Our health care system is on of the best in the VA and has centers of excellence that rival many in the private sector (spinal cord injuries and gastroenterology to name a few). Nobody can screen “Angels of Death”…it’s also sometimes very difficult to connect the dots to know you have one.

  10. Avatar FlambeauT says:

    Stories about ‘killer angel’ nurses (and doctors) don’t seem all that infrequent. This story reminds me of the Dr. Michael Swango, M.D. case where Swango was killing patients fairly regularly until he’d be fired by a hospital and then he’d just move on to work at another hospital and start killing again. One of the hospitals Swango worked at and was killing patients was the VAMC in Northport, New York. He worked there after his 5-year prison stint for poisoning co-workers in Illinois.
    Writer James B. Stewart wrote a book about Swango and how he was able to evade detection:
    Blind Eye: The Terrifying Story Of A Doctor Who Got Away With Murder
    https://www.amazon.com/Blind-Eye-James-B-Stewart-audiobook/dp/B001ATDBVK/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=Blind+eye&qid=1594991681&s=audible&sr=1-1
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Swango
    But the most egregious of killer nurses was Charles Cullen. He is suspected of killer upwards of a hundred patients. He worked at about a dozen hospitals, being fired for patients dying and then quickly being hired by other hospitals (Nb: HR departments are directed not to release derogatory info on former employees).
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Cullen
    If you have Audible be sure to listen to this riveting book on the Cullen case:
    The Good Nurse: A True Story of Medicine, Madness, and Murder
    https://www.amazon.com/The-Good-Nurse-Charles-Graeber-audiobook/dp/B00CCY92WO/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=Charles+Cullen&qid=1594991480&sr=8-1

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