Report released into overdose death of eight-year old girl in Alberta group home

EDMONTON — Alberta’s child advocate is calling for improvements after an eight-year-old in a group home died from an overdose of sleeping medication.

A report from Del Graff says the unidentified girl, referred to by the province as “Ella,” had complex needs and was on various medications.

A worker at the group home found her unresponsive in bed in early 2014.

Police investigated but could not determine how the overdose happened.

“Ella’s circumstances have raised questions about the need for improved awareness of existing protocols, the handling of children with complex needs, and medication management for children in care,” said Graff. “It is important that the recommendations in this report are implemented to prevent a similar situation from occurring in the future.”

Graff says the provincial government needs to ensure all caregivers follow medication policies.

He says an internal government investigation found gaps in the group home’s medication procedures, although changes have since been made.

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©2015The Canadian Press

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