Vet Released from VA with IV Still in his Arm

May 12, 2009

PITTSBURGH - A mother is up in arms after her son, a Vietnam veteran, is returned home from the hospital still wearing a gown and IV needle in his arm.

L. Coleman Bey is an Army veteran of the Vietnam War who receives medical treatment at the Veteran Affairs Pittsburgh Healthcare System. He was admitted Thursday because of low blood pressure and returned home Monday night by van service.

"(He was wearing) a night gown, a pair of footies they put on your feet," said Bey's mother Marion Smith. "The needle, IV needle in his arm."

Smith asked the VA Hospital why they would release Bey, who cannot speak for himself, in that condition. Before calling her an ambulance to return her son to the hospital, she sent for neighbors to see how Bey had been returned home.

The VA Hospital didn't respond to Smith until Channel 11 News started asking questions, as well. The hospital did not comment to Channel 11, but Smith received an apology from the hospital.

"They were apologizing, saying they had no business to send him out like that," Smith said.

Now Smith said she will have to keep a closer eye on the care her son receives.

"I have to make sure they are doing what they are supposed to," she said.




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