Edmonton

Two inmates at Edmonton Remand taken to hospital with possible drug overdoses

CBC News has learned that two inmates at the Edmonton Remand Centre were taken to hospital today with possible drug overdoses.

One inmate remains in hospital in 'very serious condition'

Two inmates at Edmonton Remand Centre were taken to hospital Wednesday with possible drug overdoses. (CBC)

Two inmates at the Edmonton Remand Centre were taken to hospital Wednesday morning with possible drug overdoses, CBC News has learned.

In a statement from Alberta Justice and Solicitor General, department spokesperson Dan Laville said one inmate remains in hospital in very serious condition. The other has recovered and is expected to be returned to remand shortly.

Laville said correctional staff were doing rounds Wednesday morning when they found an unresponsive inmate in his cell.

Staff initiated an emergency code, and onsite medical staff immediately began emergency first aid, which included naloxone, in case the inmate had overdosed on drugs.

Naloxone is an injectable drug that counteracts the effects of opioids such as fentanyl and oxycodon.

While that was happening, peace officers checked on other inmates in their cells.

They found another inmate in a different cell who was also unresponsive. That inmate received emergency first aid and naloxone, then both men were taken to hospital by paramedics.

An internal investigation into both incidents will be conducted.

No staff at Edmonton Remand Centre were injured.

In 2016, three inmates at the centre died of suspected drug overdoses.

In 2017, several correctional officers in Alberta have been hospitalized after accidental exposure to fentanyl during searches.

About the Author

Nola Keeler is an award-winning journalist who has worked with CBC in Whitehorse, Yukon and Edmonton since 2000. She has worked as a host, reporter, news reader and producer for CBC. Send story ideas to nola.keeler@cbc.ca.