Alaska Native lawmaker in hospital after emergency at capitol

Rep. Ben Nageak, a Democrat from Barrow. Photo from Alaska House Majority

Alaska Rep. Ben Nageak (D-Barrow) was reported to be in stable condition after suffering a medical emergency at the state capitol on Wednesday.

Nageak was delivering a speech about the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge when he had difficulty speaking. He sat down and started holding his chest as two fellow lawmakers -- a doctor and a nurse practitioner -- came to his aid.

Nageak had to be carried out on a stretcher and was taken to a hospital in Juneau. He did not suffer a heart attack but had to undergo a transfusion to address a low blood count, House Speaker Rep. Mike Chenault (R-Nikiski) said.

“I’ve been told that his heart is strong, but all of his colleagues already knew that from working with him,” Chenault said in a press release

Nageak underwent surgery recently and had received a blood transfusion at that time, Chenault said.

Get the Story:
Barrow lawmaker said to be 'doing great' after being taken from Capitol on stretcher (The Alaska Dispatch News 2/25)
State Rep. Nageak Taken From Capitol By Ambulance (AP 2/25)
Representative rushed to ER after floor speech (The Juneau Empire 2/26)
Barrow lawmaker Rep. Ben Nageak remains hospitalized (KTVA 2/26)

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