Public input needed for new CK Drug Strategy

Chatham-Kent is developing a new drug strategy, and city and public health officials want input from the public.

The city government said the need to implement the strategy was identified in 2019.

“A local situational assessment of opioid use and associated harms was completed in 2019,” said Maggie Clendenning, Harm Reduction Coordinator, Chatham-Kent Public Health. “The findings demonstrate a coordinated approach to substance use that focuses on prevention, building community capacity and supporting people who use opioids.”

The drug strategy recommendations from advisors, community partners and other interested stakeholders will be presented to Chatham-Kent Council in the fall, according to a city press release.

“We wanted to be able to showcase something that really reflected Chatham-Kent and the people who lived, worked and studied here,” Claydenning said. “The real strength of this strategy is the insights, perspectives and opinions we gain from community partners and community members, respectively.”

recent Chatham-Kent Public Health Opioid Surveillance Summary Chatham-Kent had a significantly higher suspected drug death rate than the province last year and will have the same rate of emergency department visits as the province in 2022, the report said. The data show that in the first 11 months of 2022, Chatham-Kent has a higher rate of opioid poisoning deaths than the province (25.9 vs. 12.8 per 100,000 population).

The report also showed that the number of ambulance calls related to opioid poisoning was comparable in February to previous months, and that emergency department visits and suspected drug deaths also decreased. There was one suspected drug-related death in Chatham-Kent in February and four deaths so far in 2023, public health officials said.

There will be a total of 44 drug-related deaths in CK in 2022, compared with 19 in 2021, according to officials.

CK also confirmed 28 opioid poisoning deaths between January 2022 and November 2022, they said.

Two separate surveys are currently open for public feedback and will be open until Tuesday, April 18, 2023.

click here For surveys and other information about this policy.

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