An overdose advisory is in effect for Nanaimo and other Vancouver Island communities.
Island Health issued a public service announcement Thursday, April 22, noting that there are overdose advisories in Nanaimo, Victoria, the Comox Valley and Campbell River.
“Island Health is urging people to use strategies to stay safer when using drugs. Due to the toxic drug supply, there is currently an increase in overdoses across the Island,” the public service announcement notes.
Nanaimo’s overdose advisory is in effect until April 27.
The health authority reminds drug users to call 911 right away if someone overdoses, provide rescue breathing and administer naloxone.
Island Health also suggests drug users access the overdose prevention site at 437 Wesley St. daily from 11 a.m.-9 p.m., where they can inject and/or get drugs checked. Drug users should carry naloxone and have an overdose response plan, and consider doing a “tester” hit before taking a regular hit. It’s suggested that drug users get their fix with a friend and stagger use, and if consuming drugs alone, should be close to help.
The LifeGuard app is available at www.lifeguarddh.com, the national overdose response service can be reached at 1-888-688-6677 and Island Health resources are available at http://islandhealth.ca/stopoverdose.
“Island Health asks everyone to create safe space for respectful dialogue around substance use,” the PSA concludes. “People from all walks of life use drugs for different reasons. We are all human. We all experience differing traumas and having different coping strategies. We all need connection and compassion. Starting a conversation could save a life.”