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Overdose statistics - July 2019


caption: A take-home supply of Suboxone

Fatal overdoses

According to the BC Coroners Service, in May 2019 84 died from an overdose across BC, including 29 people in the VCH region.

Overdoses seen at Emergency

In July 2019 there were 636 overdoses seen at nine VCH Emergency Departments. The majority of overdoses occurred in males (67%) and in people aged 19 to 39 years (51%).

Supervised Consumption and Overdose Prevention Sites 


In July 2019, there were 9,954 visits to the supervised injection room. Among those, 64 overdoses were reversed. 

Powell Street Getaway 

In July 2019, there were 3,355 visits to the supervised injection room. Among those, 4 overdoses were reversed.  

Overdose Prevention Sites

In July 2019, there were 37,181 visits to all supervised injection rooms. Among those, 270 overdoses were reversed. 

Drug Checking

In July 2019, 448 drug checks were performed and 44% of substances tested contained fentanyl.

What's happening

Vancouver Coastal Health and Providence Health Care are extremely concerned about the high number of overdoses and overdose deaths in our region and throughout the province and continue to take steps to respond. VCH & PHC and its partners are taking a number of steps to reduce opioid/fentanyl-related overdoses, including new actions this month: 

  • Dr. Patty Daly released her annual Chief Medical Health Officer report, which focused on the overdose emergency response. The report contained new evidence from a VCH chart review of people who died of overdose in the VCH region, and concluded with 21 recommendations for improving the overdose emergency response. The full document can be found here
  • St. Paul's Hospital overdose prevention site (OPS) honoured a successful 1 year anniversary of being the first peer-led hospital associated OPS site in Canada.

  • VCH Nurse Educators created a washroom checklist to be shared with overdose prevention and supervised consumption sites and other service providers to ensure they are delivering appropriate services to create safe spaces in washrooms and increase harm reduction and prevention services in these areas. Read it here.  

  • Established 12 new sites where people can obtain take-home naloxone kits for a total of 456 sites across VCH.

  • Sent 4 alerts about drug contamination via the Real-time Drug Alert & Response (RADAR) System.

  • Distributed 5 'Suboxone to-go' kits to patients at St. Paul's Hospital Emergency Department in the month of June, for a total of 46 so far. 

SOURCE: Overdose statistics - July 2019 ( )
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