Caption: The Fourier-Transform Infrared Spectrometer used for drug checking can identify multiple ingredients, including cutting agents, in a matter of minutes.
According to the BC Coroners Service, in October 2019 69 died from an overdose across BC, including 17 people in the VCH region.
In November 2019 there were 560 overdoses seen at nine VCH Emergency Departments. The majority of overdoses occurred in males (71%) and in people aged 19 to 39 years (56%).
In November 2019, there were 8,939 visits to the supervised injection room. Among those, 92 overdoses were reversed.
In November 2019, there were 3,116 visits to the supervised injection room. Among those, one overdose was reversed.
In November 2019, there were 37,820 visits to all supervised injection rooms. Among those, 210 overdoses were reversed.
In November 2019, 116 drug checks were performed and 62% of substances tested contained fentanyl.
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:
- Vancouver Coastal Health has hired three new drug checking technicians. Training is currently underway and a new drug checking schedule is soon be released.