Jon Verrier, a 30-year-old New York City native, was found dead in Saint Barnabas Hospital’s waiting room, where he had been waiting for about eight hours to see a doctor, hospital officials have confirmed, the Raw Story reports.
“He was found stiff, blue and cold,” an employee told ABC News. “He died because (there’s) not enough staff to take care of the number of patients we see each day. We need more staff at Saint Barnabas.”
Verrier reportedly checked into the West Bronx hospital’s ER at 10 p.m. on Jan. 19, seeking treatment for a rash. According to a hospital spokesperson, he was registered and evaluated and told to wait for a doctor in the ER, but for some reason he allegedly returned to sit in the waiting room.
According to the spokesperson, Verrier’s name was called two or three times, but he never responded. He was still alive when a security guard did a routine sweep at 2 a.m. to chase away the homeless, the Raw Story notes.
Verrier was also still alive at 3:45 p.m., according to surveillance footage, but a security guard found him three hours later, lifeless. The cause of death is still undetermined.
“There’s no policy in place to check the waiting room to see if people waiting to be seen are still there or still alive,” said the ER worker.
According to Rawstory, Verrier was struggling with drug addiction and had been to the hospital before. His family reported that he had been drug-free for months and was living at home.
The news site also noted that on average, patients at Saint Barnabas have to wait 306 minutes to be treated and released. The statewide average is 155 minutes, and the nationwide average is 137. For a severely injured individual, it takes about 112 minutes to get pain relievers for broken bones at Saint Barnabas. Across the state the wait is 63 minutes, and across the country it is 59 minutes.
“No one should sit in the waiting room that long,” Verrier’s mother, Susan, said. “I’m sorry, name calling over the loud speaker proves nothing, nothing.”
Read more at the Raw Story.