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'Are you dead, sir?' Doctor mocks patient claiming an anxiety attack in ER video

'Are you dead, sir?' Doctor mocks patient

Dr. Beth Keegstra mocks 20-year-old Samuel Bardwell, who suffered from an anxiety attack after collapsing at a summer basketball class. The incident led to Keegstra's suspension from El Camino Hospital in Los Gatos, Calif.
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Dr. Beth Keegstra mocks 20-year-old Samuel Bardwell, who suffered from an anxiety attack after collapsing at a summer basketball class. The incident led to Keegstra's suspension from El Camino Hospital in Los Gatos, Calif.

Samuel Bardwell, 20, had gone to the emergency room after collapsing at a summer basketball class at his new college, reported KPIX.

After waiting hours June 11 at El Camino Hospital in Los Gatos, Calif., Samuel and his father, Donald Bardwell, were surprised when Dr. Beth Keegstra showed up with a security guard, reported KPIX.

In a video shot by Donald Bardwell, he explains to Keegstra that his son has debilitating anxiety attacks and needs his anti-anxiety medication, which had run out.

When Keegstra replies that he needs to renew his prescription, Samual Bardwell says he's been waiting at the hospital four hours for assistance.

“I’m sorry, sir. You were the least sick of all the people who were here who are dying,” Keegstra snaps, leaning over his hospital bed. "Don't try to tell me you can't move. Come on, sit up!"

Keegstra yanks on Samuel Bardwell's arm, insisting that he sit up. When he tells Keegstra he can't get up and is having trouble breathing, she laughs and says, “He can’t inhale. Wow! He must be dead. Are you dead sir?”

Donald Bardwell protests, and Keegstra says his son's oxygen saturation levels are at 100 percent. "He is breathing perfectly normal," she says, and attributes his complaints of pain to his workout at basketball practice.

Donald Bardwell says his son received medication for his anxiety and pain on a previous hospital visit for an anxiety attack. "So you need narcotics?" she asks Samuel Bardwell. "Is that what you need?"

"Here we go," says Donald Bardwell.

Keegstra later says Samuel Bardwell told her he was not suffering an anxiety attack and accuses him of changing his story about why he was seeking treatment.

“I came in here wanting to help you and you're changing your story around," she says. "You have changed your story every f---ing time ... Put an IV in him, give him a liter of fluid and we'll get him out of here."

The video, which Donald Bardwell posted to Facebook, has been viewed 4.5 million times and shared 110,000 times. It has sparked 21,000 comments.

Dan Wood, chief executive officer at El Camino Hospital, told ABC News in a statement that Keegstra has been suspended from all facilities associated with the hospital.

He said her “demeanor was unprofessional and not the standard we require of all who provide care through El Camino Hospital,” according to the network. Keegstra has been a practicing physician for 31 years.

"We have expressed our sincere apologies and are working directly with the patient on this matter," Wood told ABC News. "Please know that we take this matter very seriously and the contracted physician involved has been removed from the work schedule, pending further investigation."

Keegstra has worked at El Camino Hospital since 2010 but was not a staff employee. The hospital’s emergency room doctors are employed by Vituity, a company based in Emeryville, Calif., reported The Mercury News.

“We are saddened that a patient in our care was affected by this behavior and are working to ensure this never happens again,” Vituity spokeswoman Allison Kundu said in an email to the publication. “We are conducting a thorough investigation into the matter.”

Donald Bardwell told ABC News that he thinks Keegstra should lose her medical license. "In my mind, I don't think she should be practicing medicine at all," he said.

Efforts by McClatchy to reach Keegstra were unsuccessful. ABC News and the Associated Press also reported that she could not be reached.

Samuel Bardwell was ultimately treated for dehydration and released.

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