Seven people died of a drug overdose in Kamloops in September

Leslie Hanson
November 16, 2018

If we look at the numbers that include the entire Northern Health Authority, which delivers services across northern British Columbia, 60 people have died in 2018 so far. The number of suspected overdose deaths in September went up in B.C., bringing overall 2018 deaths almost in line with the record-setting pace of 2017.

The numbers of people dying from illicit drug use continues to climb.

So far this year, 63 per cent of all deaths have occurred in the Lower Mainland.

According to the report by the BC Coroners Service, 86 per cent of illicit drug overdose deaths occurred inside, and 13 per cent occurred outside. The province has seen no deaths at supervised consumption or drug overdose prevention sites.

While there were slightly fewer overdose deaths through the first three-quarters of this year compared to 2017, it'd be tough to make the case that the fentanyl crisis is improving. Thirty people in Prince George have died from an illicit drug overdose this year (January to September).

Vancouver has a suspected overdose death rate of 58 per 100,000 people. Historically, the highest number of people lost to a drug overdose in Kamloops in one year was 44, back in 2016.

Vancouver city council has voted to support newly elected Mayor Kennedy Stewart in appointing an opioid emergency task force to review the factors driving opioid dependency and to advise council on possible interventions.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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