Alert issued after 14 overdoses inside 7 days in Windsor-Essex

For the eighth time in less than 10 months, officials in Windsor-Essex are raising the alarm about a strong uptick in opioid overdoses.

The Windsor-Essex Community Opioid and Substance Strategy (WECOSS) issued an alert Wednesday saying that there were 14 overdoses recorded within the seven-day period that ended on Oct. 2.

Eight of those overdoses involved the powerful opiate fentanyl, according to the group.

There were also 14 EMS calls related to substance use in that seven-day period.

“Partners involved in the WECOSS, including the [Windsor-Essex County Health Unit]Windsor Regional Hospital, Essex Windsor-EMS, Erie Shores Healthcare, and police services, continue to monitor this increase and are working to understand more about these reported cases,” WECOSS said.

The WECHU is working on establishing a supervised consumption and treatment site in downtown Windsor. In August, the health unit’s CEO said if and when government approval is granted, the facility could be up and running in months.

Windsor-Essex saw a 21 per cent increase in fatal overdoses in 2021 compared with 2020, according to provincial data.

In total, 86 people lost their lives to opioid overdoses last year.

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