4 resign from VA after vet dies with maggot-infested wound

Four employees at the Oklahoma Department of Veterans Affairs Talihina facility have resigned after it was discovered that a patient who died had a wound filled with maggots.

Executive Director Myles Deering said 73-year-old Owen Reese Peterson, a Vietnam veteran, died in October from sepsis, a result of an infection, not the parasites.

Owen Peterson

Owen Peterson

Peterson’s son, Raymie Parker, said his father’s legs were atrophying from the knees down, but Peterson refused to have his legs amputated.

“He wanted to die as a whole man,” Parker said.

But Parker also claims his father asked for a pain pump because changing his dressings had become too painful. The request, however, was denied. Peterson later came into the VA with an infection. Staff then discovered maggots in his wound.

Three nurses, one of who was the director of nursing, and a physician’s assistance all chose to resign before their termination process began, according to Shane Faulkner, a spokesman for the agency.

The incident is still under investigation and a report will go to the district attorney to determine whether any charges will be filed.

[ Tulsa World ]

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