WDGPH issues alert after overdoses, deaths in Guelph

GUELPH – Public health officials have issued a health alert after a spate of overdoses in Guelph, including two deaths, in the last week.

The April 29 alert from Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health (WDGPH) stated there have been five overdoses and two deaths attributed to a substance overdose.

“Reports suggest a mixture of compounds including the circulation of strong opioids, cocaine contaminated with opioids and the presence of benzodiazepines within the drug supply,” states the WDGPH alert.

“Please be aware that substances may stronger and/or contain substances different than what you’re used to.

Health officials are offering the following tips to help avoid overdoses:

  • carry naloxone;
  • never use alone but due to COVID-19 maintain two metres distance due to COVID-19 (phone a friend or call the Overdose Prevention Line at 1-888-853-8542 to make sure someone checks up on you);
  • start low and go slow (with every new purchase, start with 1/3 of a normal dose);
  • use the Consumption and Treatment Services Site (CTS) at Guelph’s Community Health Centre (176 Wyndham St. N.);

“You can get a take-home naloxone kit for free from pharmacies and other agencies in the Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph area,” states the public health alert.

“A health card is only needed if you are receiving a kit from a pharmacy. Pharmacies offer injectable naloxone only, where other sites offer nasal naloxone.”

Officials suggest visiting the WDGPH website for locations where kits are available.