2,000 Canadians died of an overdose in first 6 months of the year

New data from the Public Health Agency of Canada shows the crisis is not subsiding

More than 2,000 Canadians died from an opioid overdose in the first half of 2018, according to the latest numbers release by the Public Health Agency of Canada.

Of those 2066 deaths, 754 happened in B.C.

Tragically, that means more than 9,000 lives were lost in Canada between January 2016 and June 2018 to apparent opioid-related overdoses, Health Canada said in a news release Wednesday.

READ MORE: Opioid crisis may be shortening British Columbians’ life expectancy

“These statistics suggest that we have not yet turned the tide on the crisis,” the release said.

Of all overdose deaths, 72 per cent involved the deadly opioid fentanyl.

Overdose_Canada_BC
Infogram

Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada’s chief public health officer said the need to increase access to a “safer supply” of opioids is being reviewed with provinces and territories — a move encouraged by a number of public health experts, including B.C. chief coroner Lisa Lapointe.

READ MORE: B.C. pharmacists to undergo specialized opioid training

READ MORE: Could cannabis help keep people in B.C. on treatment for opioid addiction?

Other data released alongside death tolls in each province included the number of hospitalizations due to opioid-related poisonings, which saw a 27 per cent increase over the past five years. Smaller cities saw double the rates of hospital visits compared to Canada’s larger cities.

Canadian Institute for Health president David O’Toole said the data shows the opioid crisis is not just a “big city problem.”

READ MORE: Health minister announces $72M in emergency funding for B.C.’s opioid crisis

In B.C., 1,143 people died of an overdose between January and September.

With a file from The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

City of Port Alberni ponders future of uptown train station

Developer interest in heritage building prompts discussion on uptown revitalization

Join a food asset mapping focus group in Port Alberni

Learn about food mapping heritage in Port Alberni and Clayoquot Sound

Somass River sockeye fishery estimates cut in half

Local fisheries closed; poor ocean survival a prime suspect

‘Lightning’ hits Sproat Lake for annual regatta

Alberni Valley Regatta Association hosted sixth annual races

Port Alberni track and field athletes excel at BC championships

Pair brings home titles in javelin, hammer throw

VIDEO: B.C. MLA Michelle Stilwell takes first steps in nearly 30 years

‘It actually felt like walking. It’s been 27 years… but it felt realistic to me’

Report of dead body in B.C. park actually headless sex doll

This discovery, made at Manning Park on July 10, led police to uncovering two other sex mannequins

Grand Forks fire chief found to have bullied, harassed volunteer firefighter: report

WorkSafeBC, third-party human resources investigation looking into allegations complete

Dog recovering after being drenched in hot coffee, B.C. man charged

Man was taken into custody, charged, and released pending a court date

Taekwondo instructor, 21, identified as B.C. bat rabies victim

Nick Major, 21, an instructor at Cascadia Martial Arts in Parksville

Science expedition to Canada’s largest underwater volcano departs Vancouver Island

Crews prepared for a two-week research mission to the Explorer Seamount

B.C. shipyard to get one-third of $1.5 billion frigate-repair contract

The federal government has promised to invest $7.5 billion to maintain the 12 frigates

15-year-old with imitation gun caused ‘dynamic’ scene at Nanaimo mall

No one was harmed in Monday’s incident, say Nanaimo RCMP

Worried about bats? Here’s what to do if you come across one in B.C.

Bat expert with the BC Community Bat Program urges caution around the small creatures

Most Read