Increase in overdose deaths provincewide

Overdose deaths were near record high in March

The service also said that through the first three months of 2018, there have been 391 suspected illicit drug overdose deaths in B.C., on par with the 400 reported through the first three months of 2017.

More than 90 per cent of the deaths occurred indoors, and no deaths have been reported at supervised consumption sites or drug overdose prevention sites.

Preliminary data shows fentanyl was detected in more than 80 per cent of deaths in the first three months of 2018.

It's a 58 per cent increase over the number of drug overdoses deaths in B.C. the month prior.

In its latest report Thursday, the BC Coroners Service said 161 people died of an overdose in March alone - a 24-per-cent increase from the same time in 2017.

Most of the overdose deaths in 2018 are men with 319 and more people are dying in their 30s from suspected overdose cases among all age groups with 101 deaths or 25.8 per cent.

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Even the B.C. government declared a public health crisis over the crisis a couple of decades ago, however, the death toll has not abated.

There were 1,448 suspected deaths from illicit drugs in 2017.

The highest number of deaths attributed to an illicit drug overdose was 162 in December 2016.

For north Vancouver Island, there have been a total of eight suspected overdose deaths for a rate of 25.7 per 100,000. The week spanning April 23 to 29 saw 207 reported overdose calls, a 74 per cent increase with April 28 seeing the highest number of calls in one day since the beginning of past year.

The coroner's service replicated its deadline for those taking illegal drugs to not use independently.

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