According to the BC Coroners Service, in September 2018 128 died from an overdose across BC, including 37 people in the VCH region.
Overdoses seen at Emergency
In November 2018 there were 579 overdoses seen at nine VCH Emergency Departments. The majority of overdoses occurred in males (72%) and in people aged 19 to 39 years (55%).
Supervised Consumption and Overdose Prevention Sites
In November 2018, there were 10,205 visits to the supervised injection room. Among those, 91 overdoses were reversed.
Powell Street Getaway
In November 2018, there were 2,255 visits to the supervised injection room. Among those, 6 overdoses were reversed.
Overdose Prevention Sites
In November 2018, there were 28,008 visits to the five supervised injection rooms. Among those, 116 overdoses were reversed.
In October 2018, 121 drug checks were performed and 65% of substances tested contained fentanyl. Note: Due to a BCCSU data issue, the number of tests this month may be lower than the actual numbers. The number may change after BCCSU resolves the data issue.
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. Patricia Daly presented to Vancouver's new City Council, which highlighted current City priorities for 2019 in relation to the opioid crisis.
- The VCH OER team and Tenant Overdose Response Organizers (TORO) presented at the BC Affordable Housing Central Conference. Presentations included "Tooling up to Prevent Overdoses in Washrooms", "Tenant Relocation: Best Practices and Lessons Learned", "Innovations in Harm Reduction in Housing", and "A Dialogue on Addiction and Harm Reduction". The washroom presentation received media coverage.
- The St. Paul's Hospital Overdose Prevention Site has moved indoors to the Comox Wing basement level for the duration of the winter.
- Helped 255 new clients through the Overdose Outreach Team
- Established 4 new sites where people can obtain take-home naloxone kits for a total of 402 sites across VCH
- Held 10 training sessions on how to use naloxone
- Sent 2 alerts about drug contamination via the Real-time Drug Alert & Response (RADAR) System.
- VCH provided 4 top-up grants for Stream 2 - Community Overdose Crisis Innovation Grants. Recipients were the Metro Vancouver Aboriginal Executive Council, DTES SRO Collaborative Society, Sunshine Coast Resource Centre Society, and Tla'amin Nation.
- VCH provided naloxone training for the Shishalh Nation "Knock for Naloxone" event and the Musqueam Nation Village of Wellness Fair. The VCH Sharon Martin Health Promotion Program Grants (SMART) Fund also supported Culture Saves Lives' "All Our Relations" Harm Reduction Caravan to participate in the Shishalh Nation event.