While the B.C. Coroner’s service says the number of suspected drug overdose deaths declined in February, the chair of the B.C. Recovery Council says the volume of those seeking rehabilitation is increasing.
Marshall Smith says there are partnerships developing between private and public treatment providers.
He says the overdose crisis is prompting addicts to seek help.
“A lot of addicts are experiencing tremendous amounts of grief and loss of friends and loved ones, that they’re seeing die almost on a daily basis in our province. They don’t want that to happen to them. And so often, you know, that scenario is enough to prompt many of them to examine what is going on in their life and to, you know, reach out for help.”
Smith says the recovery service system is disorganized, and that the challenge for many is finding help, adding a centralized care system needs to be set up.
“I mean the definition of addiction is continued use of a substance or behavior despite consequences, so when you introduce a higher level of consequence into the picture, people are going to be prompted to make a change; they’re scared, they’re afraid, they don’t… you know, many of them don’t want to die.”
The B.C. Coroner’s report says in February there were 102 suspected overdose deaths from illicit drugs, down from January when there was 116.