The full interview with bonus material:
Five people died of drug overdoses last month. That is according to the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit. In 2021, 28 people died. That is more than double what it was only two years ago.
Northumberland County has more suspected cases of drug overdoses than anywhere else in the health unit’s coverage area.
If you ask Dr. Natalie Bocking, the chief medical officer of health, she will tell you it is a crisis. Many would agree.
The health unit’s support of a harm reduction approach to the crisis has politicians upset. Earlier this week, Bocking was in front of county council, explaining the health unit’s position. As councillors vented their frustration, Port Hope Mayor Olena Hankivsky was the only member of county council to try to take concrete steps during the presentation. She offered to seek the support of her council to help jump-start a drug strategy with the health unit.
In this interview, Dr. Bocking will explain the health unit’s position. She will also address much misinformation and disinformation being spread by politicians and the public about harm reduction, overdose prevention sites, and what can and cannot be done.
Originally aired: April 14, 2023