BC Emergency Health Services paramedics in Williams Lake. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

BC Emergency Health Services paramedics in Williams Lake. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

Number of overdose calls continue to increase in Williams Lake area

BCEHS paramedics have responded to 55 calls as of May 19

During a 24-hour period when B.C. paramedics responded to a record number of overdose calls, one of the calls was in Williams Lake.

“Williams Lake was not immune,” said Shannon Miller, communications officer, BC Emergency Health Services (BCEHS), confirming an overdose call was recorded in the community Wednesday, May 20.

In the first four months of 2021, paramedics have responded to 49 overdose calls in Williams Lake, compared to 31 in the same time period of 2020.

By month there have been 12 overdose calls in January 2021, 11 in February, 14 in March, 12 in April and to date six in May for a total of 55 so far.

Read more: B.C. paramedics respond to record overdose calls in 24-hour period for 2nd month in a row

“Paramedics want people to know the vast majority of overdose deaths happen when people use alone because there is no one to call 9-1-1,” Miller said. “This is why we stress the importance of not using alone, and to call 9-1-1 if you see someone who may be experiencing an overdose.”

When BCEHS paramedics respond to a potential overdose patient, the patient has a 95 per cent chance of survival, she added.

“If someone does use alone, we encourage them to use the Lifeguard App. It has already saved lives since it was launched a year ago.”

Read more: ‘Lifeguard’ app saves overdosing B.C. man’s life, twice



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