A take-home kit to test what’s in your drugs before you take them. (Vancouver Coastal Health photo)

Overdose response team in Vancouver shows promising results

Team gets outside traditional healthcare sites to support people who are hard to reach

A pilot project involving Vancouver firefighters and health care staff launched to stop the cycle of repeated overdoses is showing what officials say are “hopeful early results.”

Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart, city fire Capt. Jonathan Gormick and Vancouver Coastal Health Chief Medical Health Officer Dr. Patricia Daly announced the results of an overdose team pilot project aimed helping those who have had a recent overdose.

Daly says the overdose outreach team delivers services outside traditional health care sites to support people who can be hard to reach.

Overdose patients have been contacted in the days after they’ve been revived, and Vancouver Coastal Health figures show during a recent one-week period, 21 of the 22 patients contacted consented to an introduction to the outreach team.

Team member Chris Dickinson says it can be overwhelming to navigate the health care system for someone who has an opioid use disorder, and they may be unaware of the help they can receive.

Stewart says one of the key recommendations from the emergency overdose task force launched after he became mayor was to find ways to break the cycle of repeated overdoses.

RELATED: Overdose prevention sites, naloxone kits save thousands of lives in B.C., study says

“When a poisoned drug supply traps people in overdose after overdose, they not only lose hope but so do our first responders. This innovative combined overdose response team is helping to break the cycle of overdoses and bring some hope back to everyone fighting this crisis.”

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

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

Just Posted

Delta companies asked to contribute through B.C.’s new COVID-19 supply hub

New online hub to co-ordinate, source, expedite supplies and equipment to support front-line workers

Two people fined for trying to re-sell N95 and surgical masks in Delta

Police confiscated over 5,000 masks and are working with Fraser Health to see them put to good use

COVID-19: Daily update on the pandemic in Surrey, White Rock, Delta and beyond

APRIL 4: Two people in Delta fined for trying to re-sell N95 masks

Surrey veteran feels pinch from COVID-19 after cancelled surgery

Caught between two countries, and low income, soldier feels he’s been forgotten

Man injured in reported stabbing near Surrey SkyTrain station

Incident happened around 9 p.m. Friday night

‘I love you this much’: B.C. firefighters share drone video on two-metre physical distancing

The Chilliwack Firefighters Association has been doling out helpful, visual reminders about COVID-19

Full World COVID-19 update: National Guard collect ventilators in New York; Spain, Italy improve

Comprehensive coronavirus update with news from around the world.

TransLink to reduce service on some bus routes, SeaBus, West Coast Express

Changes start April 6 ‘due to low ridership and financial pressures’ amid COVID-19

Sex workers face new risks during COVID-19 pandemic

‘Desperation has kicked in’ for vulnerable, undocumented workers unable to access help

Unclear if Cowichan couple refusing to self-isolate will face penalty

No fines or charges have been laid to date, including Cowichan couple who won’t self isolate

COVID-19: Postponed surgeries will be done, B.C. health minister says

Contract with private surgical clinic to help clear backlog

Vancouver man, 21, charged after mother found dead in Squamish home

Ryan Grantham, 21, has been charged with second-degree murder

Most Read