New data released by the province this month shows that 1,262 people in Alberta have died from opioids in 2023. (Shutterstock)
[The Epoch Times, November 7, 2023](Report compiled by reporter Chen An) According to new provincial data, in the eight months of 2023, Alberta and Calgary are experiencing the worst drug poisoning death rate in history. and ushered in the deadliest year in history.
New data released by the province this month shows that another 147 people died from toxic drug overdoses in August, making it the province’s third-deadliest year to date. In 2023, 1,262 people died from opioids in Alberta.
Alberta’s drug poisoning death rate (41.1 per 100,000 people) is significantly higher than in previous years. The province previously hit a record high in 2021 (36.7 per 100,000 people) before falling slightly to 33.3 per 100,000 in 2022.
Alberta’s 2023 death rate is close to that of British Columbia, which typically has the highest number of drug poisoning deaths in the country. The death rate in the densely populated province so far stands at 45.3 per 100,000 people, according to data updated on Nov. 1.
Calgary is also experiencing one of its deadliest years on record. This year, 458 people have died from opioids in Calgary, approaching last year’s total of 478 deaths and 2021’s record of 503 deaths.
Calgary’s death rate is also significantly higher than the province’s death rate, reaching 47.3 per 100,000 people in the first eight months.
Meanwhile, Lethbridge’s toxic drug crisis reaches deadly new heights.
The city of about 104,000 has seen 94 drug poisoning deaths in the first eight months of this year, surpassing last year’s record 77 deaths. These figures indicate that there are 137.5 deaths per 100,000 people. The southern Alberta city’s death rate has been above average since 2020.
While most deaths typically occur in private homes, new data also shows drug poisoning deaths occur more often in public places. Provincial data shows that between April and June this year, 38 per cent of deaths occurred in public places and 40 per cent occurred in private residences.
This is in stark contrast to the previous season, when 23% of deaths occurred in public places and 46% in private homes.
UCP members have voted to end funding for regulated consumption websites. At the UCP’s annual general meeting this weekend, members voted in favor of a resolution calling on the current government to end provincial funding for regulated consumption sites.
The non-binding motion called the sites “a failed experiment” that failed to combat drug addiction.
Supervised consumption sites provide clean drug use equipment and other services, such as drug inspection technology that allows users to check the contents of their drugs.
Editor in charge: Qi Shoushan