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Overdose alert issued for Penticton

Naloxone with needle and kit in background.
Image Credit: FILE PHOTO
November 15, 2019 - 5:05 PM

Penticton drug users are being urged to exercise caution in the wake of a recent increase in suspected drug overdoses in the area.

Interior Health is reporting a rise in the number of opioid overdoses in the Penticton community after people have used what was believed to be a stimulant or upper, such as amphetamines or methamphetamines.

Anyone using illegal drugs is advised to take steps to reduce the risk:

For safety sake:

  •    Get your drugs checked for the presence of fentanyl available at the SOWINS (South Okanagan Women in Need Society) mobile outreach van. Call or text (250) 809-7054. For more information visit: www.drugchecking.ca
  •    Remember, smoking substances can still lead to overdose, take measures to prevent overdose.
  •    Avoid using different drugs at the same time or using drugs and alcohol together.
  •    Don’t use alone. Leave the door unlocked. Tell someone to check on you.
  •    Test by using a small amount, then go slow.
  •    Carry a Naloxone kit and know how to use it.
  •    Use at overdose prevention or supervised consumption site if one is near you. Know the signs of overdose and how to respond
  •    Recognize the signs of an OD: slow or no breathing, gurgling or gasping, lips/fingertips turning blue, difficult to rouse (awaken), non-responsive.
  •    Call 9-1-1 immediately
  •    Open airway and give rescue breaths
  •    Give naloxone (Narcan) if you have it.

For more resources and links related to overdose and substance use visit: https://www.interiorhealth.ca/AboutUs/Leadership/MHO/Pages/PHEmergency.aspx.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Kathy Michaels or call 250-718-0428 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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