Yukon NDP calls for public inquiry on hospital death

New Democrat MLA Jan Stick says Yukoners' lives are at risk because of the government's refusal to hold a public inquiry into the death of Teresa Scheunert at the Watson Lake Hospital last year.

Woman died from medication administered at Watson Lake Hospital

New Democrat MLA Jan Stick says Yukoners' lives are at risk because of the government's refusal to hold a public inquiry into the death of Teresa Scheunert at the Watson Lake Hospital last year.

Stick, the NDP's health critic, says Scheunert was a healthy 47-year-old when she went to the Watson Lake hospital with severe back pain and red flags should have gone up when Scheunert died and the cause of death was determined to be a heart attack.

New Democrat MLA Jan Stick says Yukoners' lives are at risk because of the government's refusal to hold a public inquiry into the death of Teresa Scheunert at the Watson Lake Hospital last year. (CBC)

Scheunert's family had to insist on the autopsy that showed she died from being given a toxic mix of painkillers.

Stick adds there's still no adequate explanation why the coroner's original report was pulled hours after being released and then later re-released with softer language to describe what happened.

Stick says there's much more.

"The coroner talked about a system failure and that's a big picture," she said.

Health minister Doug Graham says Scheunert's family can take the government to court if it's not happy.

"There is the potential of asking for a coroner's inquest by applying to the courts," he said.

Graham says the individuals and agencies involved in Scheunert's death are making a good faith effort to ensure it doesn't happen again.

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