Administering naloxone to a person experiencing a benzo-related overdose event won’t help. Naloxone is used to neutralize opioids. (Jenna Hauck/The Progress file photo)

Administering naloxone to a person experiencing a benzo-related overdose event won’t help. Naloxone is used to neutralize opioids. (Jenna Hauck/The Progress file photo)

Northern Health warning drug users of potential benzo contamination

The drug does not respond to naloxone, and is being included in street drugs

Northern Health is sounding the alarm on potentially contaminated street drugs.

Benzodiazepines, or “benzos” have made their way into street drugs in the region.

“Benzos are a type of medication that ‘depresses’ or slows down your brain activity,” the notice from Northern Health reads. “When benzos are mixed with opioids (down) there is a higher risk of overdose.”

Benzos do not respond to naloxone — a medication used to counter the effects of opioid overdose — as their chemical structure is different. Northern Health still recommends giving the opioid-blocker during an overdose event, in case opioids are also present.

Northern Heath recommends calling 911, and giving rescue breaths if a person is experiencing a benzos-related overdose.

“Give naloxone if you have it, multiple doses might be needed but only give more doses if the person is NOT breathing at least 10 times a minute,” the notice adds. “Illegal drugs have become increasingly toxic and highly unpredictable during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The notice recommends users not use drugs alone, and stagger doses so someone will be able to respond. If alone, download the Lifeguard app. The app will connect users with 911 if there is an overdose event.

“Talk to your doctor or nurse practitioner about how to access prescription medications to reduce overdose risk and prevent withdrawal,” the notice reads. “For more harm reduction information in the context of COVID-19, call the Northern Health COVID-19 Virtual Clinic and Information Line at 1-844-645-7811 and visit the BCCDC.”

READ MORE: ‘Benzos’ and fentanyl a deadly cocktail causing a growing concern on B.C. streets

READ MORE: CSUN hosts overdose awareness day in Quesnel

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email: cassidy.dankochik@quesnelobserver.com


@GimliJetsMan
cassidy.dankochik@quesnelobserver.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Northern Healthstreet drugs

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

First doses of COVID-19 vaccine will be available by appointment only from March 10 to 12 and March 15 to 19 from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Bella Coola General Hospital (file photo)
COVID vaccinations open to Valley residents as of March 10

Starting today all residents of the Bella Coola Valley 18+ can book their vaccination appointments

Jovin Walkus and Alayah Mack enjoy the Centennial Pool in summer 2020. (Geneva Walkus photo)
CCRD receives more funding for Centennial Pool project

The total funding for the project is now over $4 million

Provincial funding in the amount of $300,000 has been announced for the Cariboo Regional District’s plans to improve the Anahim Lake Airport runway. (CRD photo)
$300,000 provincial funding to fuel Anahim Lake Airport runway upgrade

The recovery grant is one of 38 announced to support jobs in rural communities

(Phil McLachlan/Capital News)
Murder charge laid in February 2020 stabbing death of Smithers man

Michael Egenolf is charged with the second-degree murder of Brodie Cumiskey

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: B.C. seniors aged 90+ can start to sign up for vaccination on March 8

Long-term care residents protected by shots already given

The James C Richardson Pipe Band marches in a Remembrance Day parade on Nov. 11, 2019 in Chilliwack. Wednesday, March 10 is International Bagpipe Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of March 7 to 13

International Bagpipe Day, Wash Your Nose Day and Kidney Day are all coming up this week

(The Canadian Press)
‘Worse than Sept. 11, SARS and financial crisis combined’: Tourism industry in crisis

Travel services saw the biggest drop in active businesses with 31 per cent fewer firms operating

Pictures and notes in from friends and classmates make up a memorial in support and memory of Aubrey Berry, 4, and her sister Chloe, 6, during a vigil held at Willows Beach in Oak Bay, B.C., on December 30, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Mother of slain daughters supports recent changes to Canada’s Divorce Act

Sarah Cotton-Elliott said she believed her children took a back seat to arranging equal parenting

Victoria man Brett Andersen is asking for people’s help to secure him one of eight free tickets to the moon. (Screenshot/@brettandersen Instagram)
Victoria man wants your help securing a free ticket to the moon

Japanese billionaire offering eight people a trip to the moon

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The Conservation Officers Service is warning aquarium users after invasive and potentially destructive mussels were found in moss balls from a pet store. (BC Conservation Officers Service/Facebook)
Aquarium users in B.C. warned after invasive mussels found at pet store

Conservation officers were told the mussels were found in a moss ball from a Terrace pet store.

Hockey hall-of-fame legend Wayne Gretzky, right, watches the casket of his father, Walter Gretzky, as it is carried from the church during a funeral service in Brantford, Ont., Saturday, March 6, 2021. HE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky remembered as a man with a ‘heart of gold’ at funeral

The famous hockey father died Thursday at age 82 after battling Parkinson’s disease

Donald Alan Sweet was once an all star CFL kicker who played for the Montreal Alouettes and Montreal Concordes over a 13-year career. Photo courtesy of Mission RCMP.
Ex-B.C. teacher who was CFL kicker charged with assault, sexual crimes against former students

Donald Sweet taught in Mission School District for 10 years, investigators seek further witnesses

Most Read