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An 81-year-old veteran hobbled into the emergency room at the rural Veterans Affairs hospital here in December, malnourished and dehydrated, his skin flecked with ulcers and his ribs broken from a fall at home.

A doctor examining the veteran — a 20-year Air Force mechanic named Walter Savage who had been living alone — decided he was in no shape to care for himself and should be admitted to the hospital. A second doctor running the inpatient ward agreed.

But the hospital administration said no.

Though there were plenty of empty beds, records show that a nurse in charge of enforcing administration restrictions said Mr. Savage was not sick enough to qualify for admission to the hospital. He waited nine hours in the emergency room until, finally, he was sent home.

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Walter Savage, 81, an Air Force veteran, at a medical center in Roseburg, Ore. Mr. Savage was turned away from the veterans hospital there even though two doctors said he should have been admitted.CreditRuth Fremson/The New York Times

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https://mobile.nytimes.com/2018/01/01/us/at-veterans-hospital-in-oregon-a-push-for-better-ratings-puts-patients-at-risk-doctors-say.html?referer=

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