View Full Version : Suicidal Iraqi Vet turned away from a VA Hospital

03-14-2007, 05:26 PM
VA hospital turned away suicidal vet, family says
Although he earned two purple hearts for fighting in Iraq, Marine Jonathan Schulze was rejected by a Minnesota VA hospital when he needed urgent treatment.

Schulze was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) by his family physician. He was prescribed Ambien, Valium, and Paxil, but they didn't help. When Schulze began to feel suicidal, he turned to the VA hospital in St. Cloud, Minnesota, about an hour outside Minneapolis.

His father and stepmother both insist they heard Schulze tell the intake nurse he was "suicidal." But instead of admitting him, the hospital told Schulze to go home and call back the next day.

The family says it was told the social worker who screens PTSD patients was too busy to see him. When Schulze called back the next day, his stepmom says she listened as he told the social worker he felt suicidal. The hospital then responded by telling him he was Number 26 on the waiting list for one of 12 PTSD patient beds. In other words, he'd need to wait at least two weeks before he could get treatment.

Is that any way to respond to a Iraqi Veteran who is telling you he's suicidal? And why, with the U.S. fighting two wars in the Middle East, are there only 12 beds reserved at this hospital for PTSD patients? The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs expects one in five veterans will need to be treated for PTSD.

The Marine's dad, Jim Schulze, said, "When a vet cries out that he is suicidal, even if they had to set up a bed in the kitchen, you don't turn them away. You don't put them on a waiting list."

Four days after his visit to the VA hospital, Jonathan Schulze put a household electric cord around his neck and hanged himself in the basement of a friend's home. A picture of his one-year-old daughter was at his side.

"If our men are going to serve for our country and serve in a war and a conflict then when they come home, they should be taken care of. They were promised when they were in, when they signed on the piece of paper, and they come home, and they have a problem, and what are they told, you're number 26?" his stepmom, Marianne Schulze, told me through her tears.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is investigating why Schulze wasn't admitted immediately. It wouldn't comment on the case. Neither would the hospital.

Let me tell you right now people that this is the rule with military medicine. My daughter has been falling behind in her progress since she was 8 months old. Time and time again our base clinic has told us there was nothing they could do. Now we finally get a chance to see an outside specialist and they were shocked at the way the military doctor's handled her case. She's now 6 months behind in her development and there's not a damn thing we should do about this. I lay awake in bed at night wracked with shame that I voted for an administration that has slashed the budget for military medicine yet allows obsolete technology to remain in use sucking billions of dollars that could be used elsewhere. People, especially Republicans, in this country need to wake up and realize that shameful way active duty and veterans are being treated.

03-14-2007, 07:14 PM
Its horrible how they are treating veterans. I saw first hand how the soldiers are being treated at Walter Reed Medical Center. When I was there in 2004 for hearing loss, they had the soldiers who lost their legs in combat dress for 6am formation everyday, and the ones who had lost arms had to do PT (run around 2 miles) in the morning,,,,It is pathetic.

As far as my case goes, just today I had to contact my congress man because the VA will not replace my hearing aids that are not working anymore (Since July 2006) I am a college student and student teaching at a local elementary school and can not hear the students in the classroom because my hearing aids are broken.
Finally I get a response from the VA that I have an appointment next week for a hearing test to determine if I can receive new hearing aids.....The military does not care about the soldiers. As I stated before, my case is not as drastic as others, I only have hearing loss, I have all my limbs and do not suffer from PTSD. But the ones who really need help are not receiving it...PATHETIC

Oh, not to mention. Bush has cut fundings for veterans beginning in 2008.....Good job..

tony hipchest
03-14-2007, 07:37 PM
dont worry guys. our goal is to send a man to mars to find the solution to all these problems.

plus we can find world peace on mars.

(sorry but when i heard pres bush talking about putting a man on mars my reaction was about the same as jim mora being asked about "playoffs"):

"mars? mars? are you kidding me? mars? dont talk to me about mars. im just worried about ending this war. mars?

03-14-2007, 08:09 PM
I truly have no response to this article. It saddens me that hundreds of thousands of service men and women are treated this way or any other way other than as a hero!!!

03-14-2007, 10:22 PM
Truly sad. Well, I still say send GWs daughters over there and lets see what happens.

03-14-2007, 11:18 PM
How sad and tragic.

03-14-2007, 11:21 PM
Truly sad. Well, I still say send GWs daughters over there and lets see what happens.

You can be damn sure that Bush or Cheney wouldn't put up with this kind of medical care for their no military service daughters, but it's good enough for the "poor" and "uneducated" masses that make up their military.

tony hipchest
03-14-2007, 11:23 PM
Truly sad. Well, I still say send GWs daughters over there and lets see what happens.sorry, but they are currently sporting adult diapers and making 900 mile cross country trips, to qualify for the "man to mars" program.