MSNBC’s Ronan Farrow aired a special V.A. series Thursday that blew the lid on another scandal around the veteran affairs hospitals –this one from five years ago.
Farrow, along with NBC News’ investigative unit, spoke with several V.A. patients who had diseases such as HIV, AIDS, and Hepatitis transmitted to them through faulty colonoscopy tubes.
“One of the colonoscopy tubes used had an incorrect valve, and an auxiliary tube may not have been properly cleaned between patients,” Farrow reported. “The V.A. could not rule out the possibility that one or more patients could’ve been exposed to an infection; an infection with another patient’s virus, such as hepatitis or HIV.”
Over 10,000 veterans who received colonoscopy’s received letters from the V.A. informing them of the screw-up, offering precautionary follow-up blood tests to check for viruses.
“I can’t explain the feelings that went over me,” U.S. veteran John Renninger, who contracted Hepatitis B because of the faulty colonoscopy procedures, told Farrow. “I was mad, I was upset, aggravated, about everything you could be at the same time. I wanted to strangle someone, you know?”
“It’s devastating … you don’t know what you’re passing along to your family members as a result of someone else’s miscarry,” U.S. veteran Phillip Bell told Farrow.
The V.A. declined to speak with Farrow for his report.
Watch Farrow’s report.