The Provincial Health Officer says recent lab tests confirm the deadly drug carfentanil is present in Metro Vancouver.
Back in November, drugs seized at the scene of an apparent overdose death tested positive for traces of the narcotic.
Now there’s proof it’s making its way to drug users’ supplies.
Since urine sample testing for carfentanil started January 10, it was found in 57 of more than 1,700 samples.
Dr. Perry Kendall says the potentially deadly narcotic is 100 times more toxic than fentanyl.
“If the illegal drug supply has become that much more dangerous, which I think it’s safe to assume it has, anybody who is an occasional user really should not use at all because the risks are just exponentially higher.”
But Dr. Mark Lyshyshyn, Medical Health Officer with Vancouver Coastal Health, says while it’s good to know what drugs are at play, the opioid crisis is far greater than one or two drugs.
“Basically people aren’t getting the drug they think they are getting and they’re not getting the dose they’re getting and that can be a problem whether it’s carfentanil or fentanyl or methylfentanyl or – that’s the problem people don’t know what they are taking and they don’t know the amount.”
914 people in B.C. died from opioid overdoses in 2016.
With files from Caleb Harder