WASHINGTON, DC (WOWK) – The VA Inspector General’s office released a report on its investigation into the pharmacy at the Clarksburg VA hospital where a former nursing assistant pleaded guilty to murdering seven veterans.
The report found allegations of inadequate orientation and training of pharmacy staff, a lack of pharmacist oversight of intravenous (IV) drugs, and noncompliance with controlled substance policies were unsubstantiated.
However, Investigators did find pharmacist orientation checklists and annual competencies lacked a tracking mechanism.
The report goes on to say that a suspected controlled substance diversion incident that facility leaders reported to the VA police and the OIG office of investigations, but was not reported to the email group required by the VHA directive at the time.
The report detailed the required annual IV compounding competencies of some pharmacy staff members who had lapsed. Pharmacy managers were in the process of having staff complete these competencies.
U.S. Senator Joe Manchin, D-WV, released a statement about the Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General’s report on the Clarksburg Veterans Affairs Medical Center pharmacy.
“Today’s report from the VA Office of Inspector General’s investigation of the Clarksburg VAMC’s pharmacy reveals some isolated deficiencies in training and inventory reporting. While some of these instances may seem minor, the Clarksburg VAMC has a long way to go to rebuild trust in the Veteran community. While I commend the VA OIG for conducting this investigation after many concerned Veterans came forward, we must have a more in-depth examination of the leadership’s decisions and missteps that led to the murders of Veterans by Reta Mays. Until we have full accountability and answers to our most basic questions about those deaths, I will not relent.”Sen. Joe Manchin, D-WV
There are currently five lawsuits involving the sudden deaths of seven patients at the Clarksburg VA. Reta Mays plead guilty to seven counts of murder in July 2020.
The VA is the government’s second-largest department, responsible for 9 million military veterans. The agency’s former director was fired in 2018 in the wake of a bruising ethics scandal and a mounting rebellion within the agency.