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Public health reports increase in drug related overdoses in region

Hastings Prince Edward Public Health states it is aware of 15 opioid related overdoses last month and three more suspected to be drug-related during the first week of June.

HPEPH notes increasing reports of overdose are often the result of new or toxic drugs being introduced to the area.

“It is important to recognize that many other overdoses are likely occurring in the region but are not captured in available data, as overdoses can only be reported when an individual seeks medical attention,” said HPEPH in a media statement.

HPEPH receives information about drug related overdoses from several community partners, as well as local residents. While HPEPH is continuing to learn more about what may be contributing to increased reports of overdose in our region, everyone who uses drugs is urged to take steps to reduce their risk. They are advised to avoid mixing drugs, try a small amount first,
never use alone, and have at least one naloxone kit on hand.

Public Health advises the people using drugs alone, can call National Overdose Prevention Services at 1-888-688-NORS(6677), stating that “When using this non-judgemental service, an individual will stay on the line with you while you use drugs, and if you lose consciousness, they will call for medical assistance to help you.”

If you or someone you know is struggling with drug use and would like support, visit HPEPH’s Getting Help page. To protect yourself and others, be aware of the signs of an opioid overdose and pick up a free naloxone kit. Naloxone is available at many local locations, including pharmacies. For a list of locations where naloxone is available, visit hpepublichealth.ca/safer-drug-use.

 

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