NC Hospital Faces Heat After Man Ignored 22 Hours Dies

Patient unattended as staff played cards
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 20, 2008 12:00 PM CDT
Doctors paid no heed to Steven Sabock as he died, according to investigators.   (Shutterstock)
camera-icon View 1 more image

(Newser) – Federal authorities are threatening to cut funding for a North Carolina hospital where a psychiatric patient died after being ignored for 22 hours, the AP reports. It’s still not clear what killed the 50-year-old, who at one point choked on medication, but surveillance video shows him sitting unattended while staff played cards and watched television just feet away.

The man was left in a chair for 22 hours; workers neither fed him nor helped him to the bathroom. The state has sent a team to Cherry Hospital in Goldsboro to help draft new patient care procedures, and perhaps suggest disciplinary action. It’s the second disturbing incident at the hospital—there’s also been a report of a doctor punching a teenage patient who bit him.