B.C. has recorded an uptick in overdose deaths in March 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)

B.C. sees 60% more overdose deaths in March compared to first two months of 2020

That equates to roughly seven British Columbians dying every two days

Amid COVID-19, B.C. has seen a staggering uptick in deaths due to its other provincial health emergency, the ongoing overdose crisis.

In March, 113 people died from an illicit drug overdose in the province – marking the first time B.C. has recorded more than 100 fatalities in a single month since last March.

That equates to roughly seven people dying every two days.

Compared to the number of deaths in January and February, 77 and 70 respectively, the uptick in March was seen in every health authority. notably in Fraser Health (a 91-per-cent increase) and Island health (a 80-per-cent increase).

A majority of the overdose deaths, or 57 per cent, occurred in private residences, stats show.

Street-level fentanyl and similar analogues has been detected in 70 per cent of all deaths, discovered through autopsies. Carfentanil, a drug used to sedate elephants, was detected in two deaths in the first three months of the year.

More to come.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

opioid crisis

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

New book details 1893 murder in Abbotsford and 2 trials that followed

Farmer John Marshall was found dead on his Sumas Prairie property

Mission’s outdoor farmer’s market to return on June 6

The market will be open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Saturday until Oct. 3

Abbotsford football star Samwel Uko dies at age 20

Panthers star running back dies on May 21, cause of death not yet known

A second wave of COVID-19 is probable, if history tells us anything

B.C.’s top doctor says that what health officials have learned this round will guide response in future

UPDATE: Police oversight agency investigating after shots fired Saturday night in Chilliwack neighbourhood

RCMP reported a ‘distraught male’ fired at police officers on Christina Drive – IIO is on scene Sunday

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The importance of accurate, ethical reporting is critical – perhaps as never before

Kelowna man charged with harming a hamster

The 20-year-old Kelowna man faces several animal cruelty charges

High tech fish transport system set up to ‘whoosh’ salmon past Big Bar landslide

Fish will spend roughly 20 seconds inside the system, moving at roughly 20 metres per second

Trudeau to seek 10 days of paid sick leave for Canadian workers, says talks are ongoing

Paid sick leave is key to keeping COVID-19 spread under control, prime minister says

Snowbirds jets will not be leaving Kamloops, just yet

The Snowbirds have been in Kamloops since May 17 when a plane crashed killing Capt. Jennifer Casey

COVID-19 checkpoints ‘up to them,’ Bonnie Henry says of remote B.C. villages

Support local tourism economy, but only if you’re invited in

Vancouver Island hasn’t seen a new homegrown case of COVID-19 in two weeks

Island’s low and steady transmission rate chalked up to several factors

Eight people arrested in Victoria homeless camp after enforcement order issued

Those living in tents were given until May 20 to move indoors

Most Read