FORSETH – Naloxone kits have done little to stem the tide of drug deaths

(FraserHealth.org)
(FraserHealth.org)

A B.C. GOVERNMENT media release Wednesday from Public Safety and the Solicitor General had the following headline: “Year-End Illicit Drug Death Numbers.” What they neglected to add, at least in my personal opinion (this is an editorial after all), were the following words … “Continue to Spike Due to a Lack of Meaningful Action to Stem Production of Poison Drugs!”

forsethalan-colhed-20jan2017I say this especially in light of the fact our provincial B.C. Liberal government has failed dismally in making it illegal to order / own a pill press for anyone other than a legitimate medication manufacturer, and to demand that those manufacturing this poison are guaranteed to be charged with murder when someone dies… or attempted murder in every other case.

And why do I say this? Because the government media release went on to say:

Provisional data show that a total of 142 persons died as a result of illicit drug use during the month of December, an average of nine every two days. The December deaths bring the provisional numbers for the full year of 2016 to a total of 914, an increase of almost 80 per cent over the number of deaths in the previous year.

While this report did not release information on how many of these deaths were directly attributed to fentanyl, the trend from earlier in the year would definitely indicate the vast majority of these deaths will have been from this poison.

And, a report from the Coroners Office pretty much seems to confirm this:

Illicit fentanyl detected deaths appear to account largely for the increase in illicit drug overdose deaths since 2012 … the number of illicit drug overdose deaths excluding fentanyl detected has remained relatively stable since 2011 (average of 293 deaths per year).

The Coroners Report also went on to say that:

The number of illicit drug overdose deaths in Dec. 2016 (142) is the highest recorded in a month in B.C. and is more than double the average number of illicit drug overdose deaths since 2015 (59).

But wait a minute … what about naloxone kits? Weren’t they supposed to help stem the tide of deaths from fentanyl poisoning?

All I can say is it’s a good thing they were available, but they have done little, at least by the numbers, to stem the tide of deaths from fentanyl-laced drugs.

Those who manufacture fentanyl-laced poisons should be charged with murder if a victim ends up dying. On top of that, it’s time for the B.C. government to make it illegal to own a pill press, except those actually licensed to manufacture legitimate medications. Stop passing the buck and saying it’s up to the federal government.

I appreciate, and congratulate the B.C. Coroners Service for continuing to “… work with the B.C. government’s Joint Task Force on Overdose Response and with health, community and law enforcement agencies to try to reduce this death toll.”

Now, here’s a solution I’ll provide for free!

Charge manufacturers with murder. Put them in jail. And provide services needed to help those with addiction issues get access to services within days, not months!

I know… I’m on a one-person crusade about this. However, I refuse to quit!

In Kamloops, I’m Alan Forseth.

Alan Forseth is a Kamloops resident and former member of the Reform Party of Canada, the B.C. Reform Party and the B.C. Conservative Party. His blog is My Thoughts on Politics and More.

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6 comments

  1. You somehow managed to completely ignore the reality of how many deaths would have, or could have occurred without Naloxone being available, and chose instead to focus on the numbers of actual deaths as some sort of statistic suggesting that Naloxone doesnt work. To say Naloxone has “done little, at least by the numbers, to stem the tide of deaths”, is inaccurate at best and ignorance at it’s worse.

    • NO … what I am saying is numbers continue to rise. YES Naloxone has saved lives, thank goodness, however Provincial and Federal governments dither on what to do, to stem the flow of this poison!!

      So again … 2 steps:
      1) Ban Pill Presses
      2) Charges manufacturers with murder when victims die from poison

      AND … make sure that services are available immediately for those suffering from addiction who wish to get their lives back on track

  2. I agree regarding the charges. It is beyond me why anyone caught selling stuff that contains fentanyl is not charged and jailed.

  3. You are definitely not a “one person crusader”…but you can pat yourself in the back as many times as you like (use a chain, it will make you a martyr).
    And about “your idea” to provide for the ones in need…I am not sure how clear your judgment is these days but rest assured you cannot lay claim to that one either…
    I can be available for a consultation…I do not mind to help…

    • Pierre … the one person crusade refers only to Murder, Attempted Murder, Manslaughter charges being laid — sorry I was not specific. I cannot find anywhere that the media has asked why this not being done.

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