Monday Fraser Health opened up four overdose prevention services in high risk communities.
Maple Ridge, Langley, and Abbotsford.
The authority’s chief medical officer Dr. Victoria Lee says services will include emergency health resources, outreach personnel, and extra paramedics in some areas.
“We’re bringing people that are at risk for overdoses indoors as much as possible and the provide supports and reversing overdoses if they occur.”
But it’s temporary.
Lee says how long it lasts depends on how the good or bad the crisis gets.
Lee says the service will not provide supervision of illicit drug consumption.
“We have outreach support services, community agency staff, some communities might have paramedics that are available, outreach nursing supports, enhancement to health substance use supports that are available.”
The service began in Surrey last week.
Lee says the goal is to bring people who are at risk inside to a safe place.
The service began in Surrey last week, and began in Maple Ridge, Langley and Abbotsford Monday.
The locations are:
In Langley at the Gateway of Hope (Salvation Army) 5787 Langley Bypass, in Abbotsford at the Riverside Shelter (Lookout Emergency Aid Society) at 1640 Riverside Road, and at the Maple Ridge Temporary Homeless Shelter (RainCity Housing and Support Society) 22239 Lougheed Highway; and Salvation Army’s Ridge Meadows Ministries Shelter at 22188 Lougheed Highway.
The authority will monitor the service, and then determine how long it will last.
So far, a total of 173 people have died of an over dose in those four cities this year.