Sys­tem aims to alert users about deadly drugs

The Hamilton Spectator - - CANADA & WORLD -

Med­i­cal health of­fi­cers in the Van­cou­ver area are aim­ing to quickly warn drug users about clus­ters of over­doses and batches of con­tam­i­nated drugs based on re­ports from peo­ple who use il­le­gal sub­stances. Van­cou­ver Coastal Health says the data will help staff de­cide what ac­tion needs to be taken to pre­vent fa­tal over­doses in the midst of an opi­oid over­dose cri­sis. Sara Young, the health author­ity’s re­gional leader of men­tal health and sub­stance use, says the pi­lot project has started test­ing an on­line web form and a tex­ting ser­vice that can be used by peo­ple who have reg­is­tered to re­ceive alerts about over­doses. She says they can re­port in­for­ma­tion in­clud­ing the date of an over­dose, the town or neigh­bour­hood where a sub­stance was bought, and its phys­i­cal de­scrip­tion.

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