Long, excessive wait times. Growing black mold. Cockroaches and bugs in the kitchen, dirty hallways, and faulty equipment. The Edward Hines Jr. Veterans Affairs Hospital in Chicago, Illinois is no paradise for retired servicemen to get adequate healthcare and treatment. However, the hospital has finally hit an even newer low: bodies of deceased veterans have been left unattended in the morgue to rot for up to two months, without proper burials set in motion.
The revelation was exposed by an alleged whistleblower, whose identity has not been confirmed due to fear of backlash. However, the nameless whistleblower cited one specific individual responsible for the careless handling of the bodies of former military servicemen: Chief of Patient Administrative Services Christopher Wirtjes.
The whistleblower filed a letter of complaint to the VA hospital’s inspector general, demanding accountability be held about the decaying state of the hospital. In regards to the decaying corpses in the basement morgue, the anonymous employee says “the Chief of PAS has the funds available, yet has no sense of urgency to lay the veteran to rest… Some veteran’s remains have been left in our hospital morgue for 45 days or more until they are stacked to capacity at times.”