B.C.’s ongoing opioid crisis hits home in Agassiz-Harrison

Overdose calls nearly doubled from 2020 to 2021

Overdose calls went up in Agassiz and Harrison Hot Springs between 2020 and 2021. (Graphics/Adam Louis)

Overdose calls went up in Agassiz and Harrison Hot Springs between 2020 and 2021. (Graphics/Adam Louis)

Overdose calls have been on the rise throughout the province, including here in Agassiz-Harrison.

In a recently released report, B.C. Emergency Health Service (BCEHS) said paramedics responded to 60 potential overdose calls in Agassiz in 2021. This is double the average of the past five years. There were 33 overdose calls in 2019 and 2020; calls increased by 45 per cent.

Paramedics responded to a total of 210 overdose calls in Agassiz in the past five years.

RELATED: B.C. paramedics receive record number of overdose calls in 2021, up 31% since 2020

In Harrison Hot Springs, paramedics responded to 13 overdose calls in the village. This is a slight increase from 10 calls last year and considerably higher than the five-year average of 8.6 cases. In total, BCEHS responded to 43 potential overdose calls during the past five years.

Across the province, BCEHS have responded to 35,525 overdose calls in 2021, up 31 per cent when compared to the previous year. This averages out to roughly 95 calls per day in 2021. The worst month was July, during which paramedics responded to 3,606 calls – 116 per day.

B.C. recorded 1,782 overdose deaths in the first 10 months of 2021.

– With files from Katya Slepian


@adamEditor18
adam.louis@ ahobserver.com

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