(Files by Justin Madu-MyPGNow)
The B.C. Coroner’s Service is reporting an overall increase in illicit drug deaths for March and April.
An average of 3 British Columbians have died each day due to drug toxicity in the first four months of 2020.
“Illicit drug toxicity death rates in B.C. are still the highest for any jurisdiction in Canada,” said Lisa Lapointe, chief coroner.
Provincially, April saw 117 suspected illicit drug-related deaths.
This represents a 39% increase over the 84 deaths in April of last year.
Northern Health currently has the highest rate of illicit drug deaths: 28 per 100,000 individuals compared to the provincial average of 22 per 100,000.
So far in 2020, 71% of deaths occurred in individuals aged 19 to 49 and 79% were male.
83% of illicit drug toxicity deaths occurred inside, while and 12% occurred outside.
No deaths have been reported at supervised consumption or drug overdose prevention sites.
The BC Centre for Disease Control is reporting spikes in fatal and non-fatal overdoses through both smoking and injecting.