03/18/2013 12:44 EDT | Updated 05/18/2013 05:12 EDT

Alberta Hospital Removes Hand Sanitizer After Death Of Drunken Man

CALGARY - The death of a man in an RCMP cell in southern Alberta has changed the way hand sanitizer is provided in hospitals.

Mounties took a drunken Kurt Kraus to the Vulcan Hospital in May 2010 and a doctor determined it was safe for him to be taken to a cell in nearby Gleichen to sober up.

A nurse had suspected the chronic alcoholic had ingested some hand sanitizer while at the hospital, but no one knew he had also swallowed 10 anti-depressant pills.

Within minutes of being placed in the cell, the 46-year-old stopped breathing.

A fatality inquiry in Calgary heard the man's death was caused by the combination of drugs and alcohol — his blood alcohol level was more than four times the legal driving limit.

A judge made no recommendations, but noted that hospitals have since removed all portable bottles of hand sanitizer and replaced them with wall-mounted dispensers in public areas.

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