A major investigation is underway at a Wisconsin Veteran Affairs medical center after nearly 600 dental patients were exposed to HIV, Hepatitis B and C. It was announced earlier this week by medical director Victoria Brahm, that the institution was working on contacting hundreds of #eterans who had been cared for by the dentist, whose identity has not yet been released, for refusing to follow the company’s sterilization protocol.

A patient's worst nightmare

The dentist in question had been using his own equipment while working on patients, cleaning and reusing the same instruments against the company’s policy, which mandated the use of sterilized and disposable equipment.

It wasn’t until a fill-in assistant noticed the lapse in proper procedure and reported the findings immediately to officials according to CNN. affiliate WEAU. The motive behind his actions still remains undetermined.

“During the orientation, he used our equipment. He used it appropriately so It was very purposeful from what we found in our investigation that he knew exactly what he was doing, and preferred to use his own equipment against procedure,” stated Brahm during a press briefing at Tomah VA center.

Dentist resigns as more politicians speak out

The dentist has since been removed from his administrative role and restricted from seeing any patients as many are waiting to hear back on their results.

A letter of resignation was submitted just one business day before his scheduled meeting with the Summary Review Board on Monday, December 5th.

While at the Wisconsin facility since 2015, 592 patients were seen by the dentist and have all been notified. The dentist’s patients have all been notified, offered free testing with follow-up care, and are expected to receive results in up to two to three weeks.

House speaker Paul Ryan and Senator Ron Johnson, both Republicans from Wisconsin, publicly condemned the dentist’s actions. “The news is not just heartbreaking. It’s outrageous. How can our veterans be treated so carelessly and where is the accountability?” stated Ryan.

One patient dies under medical care at Talihina Oklahoma Department of VA

Unfortunately, this isn’t the only Veterans Affairs medical center currently under investigation for improper procedures. Four employees from the Talihina Oklahoma Department of Veteran Affairs have resigned after maggots were discovered in a patient’s open wound after being treated for an initial minor infection which later turned into sepsis. While an autopsy for Owen Reese Peterson revealed he succumbed to his initial infection and not the parasitic presence in his wounds, charges may be forthcoming for poor treatment and lagging medical care. Peterson’s son, Raymie Parker, claims that while at the facility his father received poor treatment and advocated for the staff to improve its caretaking.

“I plead with the medical staff, the senior medical staff, to increase his meds so his bandages could be changed. I was met with a stonewall for much of that time.”

Talihina director Myles Deering, acknowledges that the victim's wounds were infected and carried maggots but stresses that his death was caused by the initial sepsis infection. Charges have not yet been filed but could be expected at any moment.

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