OKLAHOMA CITY - Lonzetta Sample still can't believe her oldest grandchild, who was just 10 years old, is gone. Sha'quality Cox had severe asthma.
“For the most part, she was happy except, due to her asthma, it kept her with limits to stuff that she could do,” Sample said.
Asthma took Sha'quality's young life when DHS put her in the care of her aunt. However, her grandmother said her death could have been prevented.
“She needed her medication, and they did nothing,” Sample said.
Weeks before her death back in April, Sha’quality had a severe asthma attack. Her family rushed her to the emergency room; she was treated and sent her on her way.
The family tells News 4 they begged DHS for help, because the child's insurance was cut off and she was limited on medicine.
“We kept asking them to help us with her medicine, and they just blew us off like whatever," Sample said. "I don't feel like that's fair, and now my grandbaby is gone."
A week later, Sha’quality died. They buried her on what would have been her 11th birthday.
“It's really frustrating on this one case where these medical professionals weren't consulted," said Shree Powell with DHS. "They were there as a resource, we'd given staff guidance on how to access them and they weren't accessed.”
DHS is now hoping to prevent this from happening again.
“What we did is strengthen our policy to require our workers to ensure that they do consult with these medical professionals so they don't miss out on some critical information," Powell said.
Sample blames DHS for her grandchild's death, but she hopes this doesn't happen to another family.
“No, to no one else's child, because it shouldn't,” she said.
A child welfare specialist was fired back in August, another was suspended, three others received written reprimands and one resigned.