Reports have emerged that a man died in a hospital waiting room in New York City more than eight hours after he sought emergency care.
According to multiple reports, 30-year-old John Verrier entered the emergency room of St. Barnabas Hospital in the Bronx at around 10 p.m. on Jan. 12 complaining about a rash. He was found dead in the waiting room about 6:40 a.m. the next day when a guard failed to wake him up.
St. Barnabas Hospital spokesperson Steve Clark confirmed the timeline around Verrier's death to CBS News, but said the details of what actually happened had been glossed over by many.
“Probably this scenario in this shape and form has happened in any big hospital in New York City,” he said.
When Verrier arrived at St. Barnabas, he had his vitals taken in the triage area and was told to wait in the waiting room until his name was called to see a doctor, according to Clark. At 12:35 p.m., his name was called for the first time, but Verrier did not respond. That night, his name was called two more times to see the doctor, but the patient did not acknowledge his name was being called.
“People have personal responsibility when your name is called, you have to get up and see the doctor,” Clark said.
It was determined through employee accounts and security footage that Verrier was alive at least until 3:45 a.m. A security guard woke him up after he had fallen asleep, and he had been recorded walking around the waiting room.
The cause of death for Verrier has yet to be determined, pending a medical examiners report.
The case has been investigated internally, and the hospital said it was determined that officials had done everything according to protocol.
“This could have happened anywhere outside in the cold,” said Clark.