October 28th, 2020

First Nations elder alleges she was questioned about alcohol use in Winnipeg hospital

By The Canadian Press on October 16, 2020.

WINNIPEG – A First Nations elder says her symptoms were initially ignored and she was questioned about alcohol use during a stay at a Winnipeg hospital.

Sadie North, who is 72, was brought to Grace Hospital on Sept. 6 by her daughter because she was very ill from a bacterial skin infection.

North says the original clerk who checked her in was dismissive of her illness and she didn’t receive help until she began vomiting on herself.

North also alleges a doctor who treated her a few days into her hospitalization was accusatory when he asked about alcohol use, even though the elder does not drink.

The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority has not yet responded to a request for comment.

Federal ministers are holding an emergency meeting with Indigenous leaders and health professionals today to discuss racism in health care.

Last month, an Indigenous woman used her phone to livestream hospital staff using racist slurs against her as she lay dying in a Quebec hospital.

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