Overdoses are killing more people in Western Canada than COVID-19. B.C. has a bold new plan

The Globe and Mail (Canada)
Friday, September 25, 2020

canada opiod crisisCanada’s other epidemic, the opioids overdose crisis, is more deadly than ever this year. Deaths in British Columbia hit new highs over the spring, including a monthly record of 181 illicit drug toxicity deaths in June, and Alberta revealed that opioid poisoning killed 301 people in the spring – also a record. In both provinces this year, overdoses have taken far more lives than COVID-19. This public-health challenge, like the fight against the virus, is far from over. Work to date has saved thousands of lives, but more must be done. Last week, B.C. took a major step toward ensuring a safer supply of clean drugs, regulated and overseen by medical professionals. The goal is to protect addicted people whose lives are at risk because of the toxicity of illicit drugs sold on the street.