Ontario opioid tracker provides up-to-date data

In the first half of 2016, two people died every day from opioids in Ontario. Fentanyl seems to be the leading cause of death.

Ontario opioid tracker provides up-to-date data

More than 400 people in the province have died of overdoses in the first half of 2016
by Kristin Rushowy

More than 400 Ontarians died from an opioid overdose in just the first six months of last year, a grim statistic that was revealed as the provincial government launched an online tracker to monitor the drug’s impact across the province.

“The opioid crisis in Ontario is a growing and evolving problem, and one we are continuing to work diligently to combat,” said a joint statement from Health Minister Eric Hoskins, Chief Medical Officer of Health David Williams and Chief Coroner Dirk Huyer, all of whom are doctors.

Having access to data on the opioid situation is a part of the provincial strategy to fight addiction and overdose deaths and the numbers show that “the opioid problem is affecting people of all ages, right across Ontario,” they also said.

In 2015, some 371 people died of an opioid overdose in the first six months of the year, and 412 during the same time period in 2016, which represents an 11 per cent increase.

The province’s new “opioid tracker” has more 13 years’ worth of statistics, listing cases that required medical care, hospitalization or resulted in death, and is meant primarily for health-care workers but is also accessible to the public.

Opioids are painkilling drugs that can be illegal — such as heroin — or prescribed, including morphine and oxycodone. Prolonged or regular use can lead to addiction.

The provincial government has previously announced opioid-fighting strategies including free naxolone, supervised injection sites and better supports for addicts.

Naxolone, or Narcan, is a life-saving drug that can be given to combat an opioid overdose. It can be taken via injection or nasal spray, and works almost immediately.

In all of 2015, more than 700 Ontarians died from using opioids, a number that has increased 94 per cent since 2003.

Toronto Star

Go Fentanyl Go!
You can always count on opiates to help control the human population. Here's a Cliffy style meme.

How does that compare to the ones that died from the top 6 causes of death??