Photo: Medical Health Officer Mark Lysyshyn (at left), demonstrates how clients can check their substances for fentanyl, with VANDU's Vide-President Hugh Lampkin.
From July 2016 to March 2017 clients at Insite checked their drugs for fentanyl more than 1,000 times. Overall, 79% of drugs checked were positive for fentanyl, including 83% of heroin samples, 82% of crystal meth, and 40% of cocaine.
The results of this study were published in the Harm Reduction Journal this week. The study was authored by Vancouver Coastal Health's Dr Mark Lysyshyn, Carolyn Dohoo and Sara Forsting; and PHC's Mohammad Karamouzian, Ryan McNeil and Thomas Kerr.
Read the study in the journal: https://rdcu.be/6hWM.
VCH offers free, anonymous drug checking services so people can determine what is in their substances, and potentially take action to reduce the risk of any associated harms. This service is available at all overdose prevention and supervised consumption services.
VCH also has a Fourier-Transform Infrared Spectrometer (FTIR) which can identify multiple ingredients, including cutting agents, in a matter of minutes.
Read about all of VCH's drug checking services on the VCH website.