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February 23, 2016

Pennsylvania nurse charged with performing surgery while drunk

Wilkes-Barre medical professional allegedly forgets he's on call, comes to work intoxicated

Charges Health
The Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center. Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center/Website

The Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center.

A Pennsylvania nurse is accused of helping perform surgery while intoxicated.

According to the Wilkes-Barre Times Leader, Richard Pieri, 59, was called into the Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center to assist with an emergency procedure on Feb. 4. 

He told police he had forgotten he was on call and had been at a local casino where he consumed four or five beers.

Pieri allegedly stumbled into the hospital after being caught on surveillance video crashing his truck into a median in front of the medical center, the newspaper reports.

During the surgery, Pieri was responsible for prepping and retrieving the patient, preparing surgical materials and checking the patient’s vital signs, among other things, according to the Times Leader.

WNEP16 reports Pieri showed signs of intoxication during the procedure and was reported by a coworker.

The VA has removed him from direct care with patients as a criminal case and investigation are pending.

The organization believes the incident had no impact on the patient, according to the news station.

Pieri has been charged with recklessly endangering another person, DUI and public drunkenness.

Information: Wilkes-Barre Times Leader, WNEP16