ER Visits Up But Death Toll Stabilizing As Fight Against Opioid Crisis Continues

One-Year Update from SMOS Highlights Smaller Victories in Larger War

A year in, and a regional Anti-opioid squad has demonstrated some “significant achievements”

A first-year update from the Simcoe Muskoka Opioid Strategy is out, and it highlights what has accomplished in the fight against the region’s opioid crisis. Preliminary data shows while the number of emergency room visits grew in 2018 from the year before, SMOS noted the number of opioid-related deaths seems to have stabilized. The update notes it is too soon to say whether anything SMOS did in 2018 had an impact on the number of opioid-related death and harm in the community, adding it remains at highly concerning levels.

“While there is much more to be done, the SMOS 2018 Status Update demonstrates significant achievements that have been made to date across our region,” says Dr. Lisa Simon, SMOS co-chair and Associate Medical Officer of Health, Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit, one of the members of SMOS.

Highlights of the year include:

  • 132 health professionals trained in treatment of opioid use disorders
  • More than 7,000 Naloxone kits distributed
  • 89 people completed the Lived Experience Survey
  • Three new Needle Exchange Sites which increased access to safe supplies

The 2018 Status Update can be viewed here.