Wave of drug deaths hits NZ
DOZENS of deaths and almost 1200 ambulance call-outs in a year have left New Zealand’s government facing what some say is an unprecedented synthetic cannabis problem.
“We would describe it as a public health emergency,” said New Zealand Drug Foundation executive director Ross Bell. “New Zealand has never experienced this before and, in fact, no other country is experiencing deaths at this level (from synthetic cannabis).”
A coroner’s report in June linked the drugs to as many as 45 deaths in a year, compared with two deaths in the previous five years.