Hot Spots

Strength of down can vary within a batch and even in the same bag.

Whenever a drug is diluted with other ingredients, like Caffeine and Sugars for Down, there is a change of the concentration of fentanyl to be unequally spread through the batch.

Using slow and low reduces risks. One puff may be stronger than the previous one!

Staggering doses may not give as much of a rush, but it helps prevent overdosing.

As an example, multiple light blue down  samples were tested in Penticton this week. They all presented the same composition: Caffeine, Erythritol and Fentanyl. The big difference was that they ranged in concentration from 15% all the way to 35%!

Down of all colors can vary in strength.

Get your drugs checked!

Nelson Drug Alert

Interior Health – Nelson

Meth in Nelson has been found to also contain fentanyl and benzos.

Sold as Meth, Side, Methamphetamine. Test your meth for presence of fentanyl!

Risk:

Risk of overdose with severe complications including death.

Overdose response:

Naloxone does not work on Benzos, BUT naloxone will work on the opioid overdose symptoms.  After giving breaths and naloxone, the person may begin breathing normally, but may not wake up. More doses of naloxone should only be given if the person is not breathing normally (less than 10 breaths a minute). If the person is breathing normally but remains unconscious, place in recovery position and stay with them until emergency services arrive.

No matter what or how you use (oral, smoking, snorting, injecting) take steps to prevent overdose

  • Know the risks when mixing drugs
  • If you must use while alone, consider using the Lifeguard app which can connect you with 911 emergency responders if you overdose. Download at the App Store or Google Play.   
  • When using your substance start with a small amount, and then go slow.
  • Use with others or at an Overdose Prevention or Supervised Consumption Site, if one is near you.
  • Know how to respond to an overdose – call 911, give rescue breaths and naloxone.

 

Here is a link to download a printable version of this poster.

Drug Checking Report for Interior Health – March 2022 – BCCSU

The BCCSU publishes Provincial and regional monthly reports that summarize drug checking results. Here is the March 2022 report from samples collected by Drug Checking Sites across the Interior Health region.

Key Findings

The percentage of opioids testing positive for benzodiazepines in the region remained high (67.4%,
99 of 147 samples), but trends may be hard to infer due the large geographic region. Etizolam, the
predominant benzodiazepine in expected opioids, may be missed by drug checking technologies.
This means that the true rate may be higher than reported here.

Find the full report here.

Penticton Drug Alert

Interior Health – Penticton

Drug samples in Penticton have been found to contain a higher than average amount of fentanyl and benzodiazepines. In this case, Etizolam was the benzo detected.

The samples have been sold as “down” or fentanyl –  usually in a darker purple chunky texture.

Risk:

High risk of overdose with severe complications including death.  Substances containing benzodiazepine can cause prolonged sedation (several hours).

Overdose response:

Naloxone does not work on Benzos, BUT naloxone will work on the opioid overdose symptoms.  After giving breaths and naloxone, the person may begin breathing normally, but may not wake up. More doses of naloxone should only be given if the person is not breathing normally (less than 10 breaths a minute). If the person is breathing normally but remains unconscious, place in recovery position and stay with them until emergency services arrive.

No matter what or how you use (smoking, snorting, injecting) take steps to prevent overdose

  • Know the risks when mixing drugs
  • If you must use while alone, consider using the Lifeguard app which can connect you with 911 emergency responders if you overdose. Download at the App Store or Google Play.   
  • When using your substance start with a small amount, and then go slow.
  • Use with others or at an Overdose Prevention or Supervised Consumption Site, if one is near you.
  • Know how to respond to an overdose – call 911, give rescue breaths and naloxone.

 

Here is a link to download a printable version of this poster.

Drug Checking Report for Interior Health – February 2022 – BCCSU

The BCCSU publishes Provincial and regional monthly reports that summarize drug checking results. Here is the February 2022 report from samples collected by Drug Checking Sites across the Interior Health region.

Key Findings

The percentage of opioids testing positive for benzodiazepines in the region fell slightly (68.5%, 61 of 89
samples) from last month, but trends may be hard to infer due to the small number of samples over a large
region. Etizolam, the predominant benzodiazepine in expected opioids, may be missed by drug checking
technologies. This means that the true rate may be higher than reported here.

2 samples of crack cocaine, 1 sample of methamphetamine, and 1 sample of flualprazolam tested positive for
fentanyl this month.

Drug checking is available in many different communities in the Interior Health region. For updated times and
locations, visit our website.

Find the full report here.

ANKORS Nelson – Drug Checking Report – Week of February 17, 2022

It was a busy week for drug checking at ANKORS in Nelson. They were in Grand Forks on Tuesday and in Trail on Wednesday for testing – the rest of the week was spent in Nelson. Please find details in attached report.

View full report here.

Interior Health Wide Drug Alert

All communities of Interior Health

Multiple drug samples in communities across the region have been found to contain Up to 55% fentanyl (Average is +/- 10%).

Up to 25%  of benzodiazepine (Average is +/- 1 to 2%) has also been detected in some samples.

The samples have been sold as “down”, heroin, or fentanyl – a wide range of colours and textures have been identified.

Risk:

High risk of overdose with severe complications including death.  Substances containing benzodiazepine can cause prolonged sedation (several hours).

Overdose response:

Naloxone does not work on Benzos, BUT naloxone will work on the opioid overdose symptoms.  After giving breaths and naloxone, the person may begin breathing normally, but may not wake up. More doses of naloxone should only be given if the person is not breathing normally (less than 10 breaths a minute). If the person is breathing normally but remains unconscious, place in recovery position and stay with them until emergency services arrive.

No matter what or how you use (smoking, snorting, injecting) take steps to prevent overdose

  • Know the risks when mixing drugs
  • If you must use while alone, consider using the Lifeguard app which can connect you with 911 emergency responders if you overdose. Download at the App Store or Google Play.   
  • When using your substance start with a small amount, and then go slow.
  • Use with others or at an Overdose Prevention or Supervised Consumption Site, if one is near you.
  • Know how to respond to an overdose – call 911, give rescue breaths and naloxone.

 

Here is a link to download a printable version of this poster.

When Ketamine is not Ketamine.

Testing ketamine highly recommended for West Kootenay Communities!

A white crystalline powder with the appearance of ketamine is circulating in the West Kootenays. Sold as ketamine or K, it actually tests as an intermediate chemical for the synthesis of opioids with nothing else detected.  There is no history of human use for this substance and thus, we are not able to tell what dangers may be associated with it. According to people who have tried it, it has no noticeable effect.

There has also been occurrence of this unusual chemical appearing mixed together with ketamine. This means that even if the ketamine you have seems to have some effect, there is still a risk of taking a substance with no record of it having been tried by humans.

To see pictures of the ketamine tested, check out the results page by clicking here.

We highly recommend testing your Ketamine, especially if it has been acquired recently!

ANKORS in Nelson is open for testing:

Monday and Thursday, as well as sometimes Wednesday depending on mobile testing hours
9:30-4:30, with a break for lunch from 12-1
Samples can be dropped off anytime.

ANKORS also has a mobile testing operation! Learn more about it here: Drug checking comes to Grand Forks, Castlegar, and Trail!

ANKORS Nelson – Drug Checking Report – Week of February 3, 2022

It was a busy week for drug checking at ANKORS in Nelson. They were in Grand Forks on Tuesday and in Trail on Wednesday for testing – the rest of the week was spent in Nelson. Overall, ANKORS tested 25 samples: nine samples in Grand Forks, six in Trail, and ten in Nelson. The substances were as follows: 12 down samples, seven MDMA samples, five methamphetamine samples, and one ketamine sample.

View full report here.