Nurse charged with being drunk while assisting in surgery

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An eastern Pennsylvania nurse has been charged with crimes related to allegedly being drunk while assisting during a surgery.

Nurse Richard J. Pieri, 59, of Drums, admitted to having between four and five beers at Mohegan Sun Pocono casino on the night of Feb. 4, Allentown’sMorning Call reported. He claimed to have forgotten that he was on call at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center near Plains Township.

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Police said to WNEP in a related article that Pieri appeared on a video that night stumbling in the parking lot before heading in to help with an emergency appendectomy for which he was called a little before midnight.

An affidavit referenced by the Morning Call stated that a physician’s assistant told police that Pieri was “definitely not himself” that evening and was asked if he was “drunk or something.”

Pieri’s role during the procedure, according to WNEP, was to prepare the patient and the operating room and to monitor the patient’s vital signs.

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Pieri has been charged with recklessly endangering another person, DUI and public drunkenness, WNEP added, also stating that the VA believes his state-of-mind had no impact on the patient.