An Edmonton family is looking for answers after a patient at Alberta Hospital died early Saturday morning.

Lisa Goltman was a long-term patient at the hospital.

In a statement released on Saturday, Alberta Health Services (AHS) called her death "unexpected."

An autopsy is scheduled for next week.

But Goltman’s family says they are still looking for answers.

"My sister’s dead and I don’t even know why," said Marie Goltman on Saturday.

"I’m very much still in shock, I don’t know how to handle it yet," added older sister Michelle Goltman.

"But I’m very angry."

Looking for answers

Lisa Goltman was rushed to the emergency room at the University of Alberta Hospital in March after receiving multiple injuries to her head — including two black eyes, a bleeding forehead and a split lip — while a patient at Alberta Hospital.


Lisa Goltman was rushed to the emergency room in March with multiple injuries to her head — including two black eyes, a bleeding forehead and a split lip. (Michelle Goltman)

Staff at Alberta Hospital opened an  investigation into the incident after Goltman's family alleged she may have been assaulted by hospital staff.

At the time, Goltman's mother said she was scared of what might happen to her daughter — who returned to her unit at Alberta Hospital the same day she was injured — after her family spoke out.

Lisa Goltman’s sisters now say that her condition appeared to deteriorate in the month since her injuries occurred, adding that she became withdrawn and frightened.

"She wasn’t the same after that. She wouldn't sit, she wouldn’t talk... all she wanted to do was come home," said Marie Goltman.

"She won't eat, she won't sleep, she won't go to the bathroom."

The family says Goltman claimed she was dying.

But they say when they raised their concerns with hospital staff, they were told Lisa was actually improving.

"I just feel so sorry for my sister — because all she was doing was asking for help but no one would listen to her," said Marie. "And now we can’t help her."

Michelle Goltman told CBC News she thinks that Lisa's complaints weren't taken seriously because she was a mental health patient. 

"People should not disregard what these mental patients are saying... because they know what’s going on," she said.

Edmonton Police Service investigating

Alberta Health Services sent CBC News a statement concerning Lisa Goltman's death Saturday afternoon.

"An investigation into the family’s prior concerns was undertaken by AHS, and the conclusions were provided to the family," it reads.

"This investigation did not reveal any evidence of inappropriate conduct by staff."

"We are cooperating fully with the Edmonton Police and the Medical Examiner to determine what happened to the patient."