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March 2018: Second-deadliest Month in B.C. with 161 Deaths


British Columbia is still struggling to get out of the drug overdose crisis. The B.C. Coroners Service revealed latest data on Tuesday. It states that about 61 people had died in March. All these deaths were suspected of illegal drug overdoses in the province. March is said to be the second deadliest month in the history of the province.

These deaths have represented about 24% increase in comparison with the data of March 2017 when about 130 people died from illegal drug overdoses.

Judy Darcy, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, asserted that it is heartbreaking that the number of deaths has reached the highest point. She concerned about the toxic drug supply on the streets. She asserted that they are doubling their efforts to persuade people not to use drugs alone and be sure to have an access to more overdose prevention sites. Further, she pointed out that the problem is not limited to British Columbia. It is spreading rapidly across Canada and Europe.

Initial data collected for 2018’s last three months has disclosed that fentanyl was detected from 83% of the dead bodies in the post-mortem testing. Out of every 10 people died, 7 belonged to the age group from 19–49 Years.

To deal with this crisis, the provincial government has invested about $10 Million. Darcy has proclaimed that about 800,000 people have visited the overdose prevention site. It has resulted in saving of about 4,500 lives from the possible miss event because of drug overdoses.

Recently, Aaron Regunberg, a Providence Democrat, introduced a bill to legalize the possession and supply of the test strips to find out fentanyl-laced with illegal drugs such as heroin. The legislation commenced in the General Assembly may give rise to a new option for distribution of a low-tech tool in Rhode Island, which will help to control overdose deaths.

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