Nanaimo hosts forum on overdose crisis

A forum on drug overdoses by the Nanaimo Overdose Prevention and Management Working Group happens Tuesday (Nov. 15) from 4-8 p.m.

  • Nov. 12, 2016 11:00 a.m.

Nanaimo will host a forum on a opioid overdose crisis, Tuesday.

Residents can learn about the opioid overdose crisis, the impact its having on this community and work underway to prevent and manage overdoses, during a forum by the Nanaimo Overdose Prevention and Management Working Group.

Seventy-five community members have died of an overdose in the last four years and the community has one of the highest rates of overdose deaths in B.C., according to a public service announcement from Island Health.

This year, it says Nanaimo Regional General Hospital’s emergency department will see about 500 non-fatal drug overdoses.

“We need to continue to bring the community together to talk about the seriousness of the overdose crisis and how better to respond,” said Dr. Paul Hasselback, Island Health’s medical health officer for Central Vancouver Island in the public service announcement. “This forum will raise awareness about overdose risks and what people can do to save themselves and those they care about.”

The forum goes from 4-8 p.m. at the Nanaimo Aquatic Centre. Member agencies of the working group will be available to talk with residents and will participate in a panel discussion beginning at 5:15 p.m. A question-and-answer session will follow.