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Teens' right to health privacy

The family doctor who delivered Elliot Eurchuk as a baby and saw him as a patient until 18 months before his death told a British Columbia’s coroner's inquest that teens have the right to privacy about their medical issues.

Dr. Marjorie Van der Linden testified she spoke with Eurchuk about the risks of overdose associated with using street drugs, but he defiantly denied using drugs.

The 16-year-old was found unresponsive in his bedroom on April 20, 2018, and the coroner's jury has heard he died of a drug overdose.

Van der Linden told the five jurors that she encourages teenage patients to discuss health issues with their parents, but some are not comfortable discussing matters like birth control or abortion.

Eurchuk’s parents have said they were restricted from helping their son with his addiction issues because privacy laws prevented the sharing of medical information.

Dr. David Harrison testified he became Eurchuk's family doctor in July 2017 and found it unusual that the teen asked for a prescription for the opioid Percocet on his first visit to help ease pain from recent shoulder surgery.



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