B.C. parents grieving teen’s overdose death say it started with opioid prescription

Elliot Eurchuk, 16, died at his Oak Bay home Friday, after taking street drugs

Vancouver Island parents left grieving the death of their teen son say his unintentional overdose was one following years of being prescribed opioids while recovering from major surgeries.

Elliot Eurchuk, 16, died at his Oak Bay home Friday. His parents, Rachel Staples and Brock Eurchuk, believe he took street drugs to help him sleep.

In a post to social media, Staples said her son’s death has come after “a very difficult past two years.”

Staples said that despite her and her husband’s requests to doctors for alternative pain remedies, Elliot was prescribed opioids for four major surgeries in 2017, including two for a fractured jaw and two shoulder reconstructions – all within four months time.

READ MORE: B.C. mom whose two sons overdosed urges doctors to check prescription history

READ MORE: Nurse practitioners in B.C. can now prescribe opioid substitutes

“Elliot, being 16, was given full autonomy by the Health Care system to make his treatment decisions while specifically having my Husband and I excluded from this information … this policy needs to be changed,” Staples said.

“Parents need a say in their child’s health care.”

In 2016, The College of Physicians and Surgeons of B.C. rolled out new mandatory standards for prescribing opioids and other addictive drugs, replacing guidelines that acted more like recommendations for prescribing pain medications.

Doctors who don’t follow the guidelines can now face complaint hearings and disciplinary actions like fines and licence suspensions if reported to the college.

READ MORE: As feds ease access to prescription heroin, B.C. could see relief

READ MORE: Physiotherapy could help combat B.C.’s opioid crisis

Doctors in B.C. also have access to a real-time database called PharmaNet, which tracks dispensed prescriptions in one central data system.

Black Press Media has put a request for comment into the college and Vancouver Island Health Authority.

Teen remembered for love of sports, humour

Staples said her son had a sharp wit, and humour far beyond his age.

She said he loved all kinds of sports from rugby to soccer to hiking, and was an avid reader.

“He greatly valued his friendships and approached friends with sincere consideration and genuine kindness,” she said.

Elliot had hopes of pursuing a career in medicine, with a love for chemistry.

“For those who really knew Elliot, you knew he would give the shirt off his back to help you,” she said. “We will all miss quirky, funny sporty Elliot.”


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

RCMP nab prolific car thief in Agassiz after month-long search

A province-wide warrant was issued for Brian Robert Stephan in June for a litany of offences

Traffic snarls at Agassiz/Harrison bridge after biker falls on road

A road bicyclist fell from his bike while crossing the bridge and needed medical attention

Complaint about cattle prods at Chilliwack rodeo

Fair reps investigate after Vancouver Humane Society pics show shocking device at bullriding event

Inquest scheduled into woman’s death while in Chilliwack police custody

BC Coroners Service has scheduled a public inquest into the death of Charlene Teresa Sakamoto

New trail link from Chilliwack Community Forest to the valley floor underway

The new trail will boast 350-metre elevation drop for mountain-bikers, hikers and more

PHOTOS: B.C. city wakes up to darkness under wildfire smoke

The rest of the province also dealing with thick haze as smoky skies continue

Castlegar bridge designed by architect of collapsed Italian bridge

Riccardo Morandi designed the Kinnaird Bridge, which is part of Highway 3.

Federal government announces over $115 million to Royal Canadian Navy

Defence Minister Harjit S. Sajjan was at Victoria’s CFB Esquimalt to announce missile system upgrades

Surrey looks to target illegal dumpers with surveillance cameras

Since 2007, illegal dumping has cost the City of Surrey more than $8.5 million dollars

Court sides with developer in Jumbo ‘substantially started’ dispute

Resort developer successfully argues 2014 decision that halted the project was unfair

Canada’s tax system unfairly favours wealthy, poll of CRA auditors suggests

Four of every five respondents think loopholes and tax credits built into the system benefit the rich

Banff’s Sunshine ski resort upset with proposed guidelines from Parks Canada

The plan would allow for more visitors but wouldn’t let Sunshine build additional facilities

Conditions improve for battling northwest B.C. wildfires, minister says

‘Self-evacuated’ people fleeing smoke advised to go home

UPDATED: B.C. matching Red Cross donations for victims of wildfires

Donations being taken by many organizations, BC Hydro waiving bills

Most Read