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.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Go By Bike Week hits the road in Nelson

The event runs Sept. 28 to Oct. 4

Volunteers needed at Nelson soup kitchen

Our Daily Bread is struggling to find help

Community comes together to create outdoor classroom at Kootenay school

Brent Kennedy Elementary has a new learning space thanks to an inspired teacher Kalesnikoff Lumber

RDCK rescinds evacuation alert for properties near Talbott Creek fire

Cooler and wetter condition are expected to help crews fight fire in coming days

LETTER: Friends of Kootenay Lake should read the science

From Harvey Andrusak, former provincial director of fisheries

B.C. reports 96 new COVID-19 cases, one hospital outbreak

61 people in hospital as summer ends with election

‘Unprecedented’ coalition demands end to B.C. salmon farms

First Nations, commercial fishermen among group calling for action on Cohen recommendations

Earthquake off coast of Washington recorded at 4.1 magnitude

The quake was recorded at a depth of 10 kilometres

B.C.’s top doctor says she’s received abuse, death threats during COVID-19 response

Henry has become a national figure during her time leading B.C.’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

BC Liberals must change gears from election cynicism, focus on the issues: UBC professors

COVID-19 response and recovery is likely to dominate platforms

B.C. could be without a new leader for multiple weeks after Election Day: officials

More than 20K mail-in voting packages were requested within a day of B.C. election being called

Vancouver Island sailor stranded in U.S. hospital after suffering massive stroke at sea

Oak Bay man was attempting to circumnavigate the world solo

Most Read