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Politicians Share Outrage Over Vet's Death at VA Hospital

U.S. Rep. Katherine Clark (D-MA) (C) speaks as (L-R) Rep. John Sarbanes (D-MD), Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) listen during a news conference at the Capitol April 27, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)
U.S. Rep. Katherine Clark (D-MA) (C) speaks as (L-R) Rep. John Sarbanes (D-MD), Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) listen during a news conference at the Capitol April 27, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Members of the Bay State congressional delegation expressed outrage after a Vietnam veteran who required round-the-clock care died at the Bedford VA Medical Center.

The Boston Globe reported Tuesday that Bill Nutter, who had lost both legs to diabetes and had a condition in which his heart could stop, died at the veterans' hospital in July 2016 after a night-shift aide failed to check on him.

U.S. Rep. Katherine Clark said in an emailed statement: "When families trust the well-being of their loved ones to the VA, they deserve the peace of mind that comes with quality, compassionate care. That any veteran is subject to the treatment described today is unconscionable, and we must use every available resource to not only get to the bottom of what happened at the Bedford VA, but also to make sure it never happens again."

Matt Corridoni, a spokesman for U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton, said Moulton was expected to have a phone conversation with Veteran Affairs Secretary David Shulkin Wednesday to discuss Nutter's death.

The Globe reported Shulkin's office suspended the nurse's aide with pay. The aide was supposed to make hourly checks on Nutter. The aide was playing video games on her computer when she should have checked in on Nutter, the report said.

The VA inspector general is investigating the allegations against the aide with assistance from the FBI and U.S. Attorney General's Office, the report said.

Michael Hartigan, a spokesman for U.S. Rep Niki Tsongas, said in a statement: "A primary concern of hers has been that the Bedford VA has been without a permanent director for so long. She has repeatedly requested that VA and Administration officials update her directly with regard to actions they are taking to address complaints raised not only in these articles, but also by veterans who have reached out to our office directly."

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren tweeted: "This is a disgrace. Our veterans deserve better. I'll be demanding answers and accountability from @DeptVetAffairs." ___ 

--This article is written by Antonio Planas from Boston Herald and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@newscred.com.

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