March 12, 2018 7:17 pm
Updated: March 13, 2018 10:21 am

Hamilton’s opioid-related deaths jump nearly 80 per cent higher than provincial rate

Between January and October 2017 there were 70 confirmed and five suspected opioid related deaths in Hamilton.

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy
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Some startling stats from Hamilton public health show the city’s opioid-related death rate has skyrocketed past that of the province.

Between January and October 2017 there were 70 confirmed and five suspected opioid related deaths in the city.

That’s 78 per cent higher than the provincial rate and nearly double the city’s 2016 rate.

READ MORE: Opioid-related deaths in Ontario jump 52 per cent in 2017 compared to year before

Dr. Elizabeth Richardson, Hamilton’s Medical Officer of Health, says the numbers are disappointing.

Richardson says one positive is that there are more resources on the ground than ever before.

READ MORE: Canada on track to see over 4,000 opioid-related deaths in 2017: advisory committee

Nearly 300 naloxone kits have been distributed this year, reviving 78 lives.

Richardson says the city’s board of health will consider adding Hamilton fire to a growing list of community partners with access to the kits, during a meeting next week.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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