Intention to seek emergency medical services during community overdose events in British Columbia, Canada: a cross-sectional survey

Original research
by
Kievit, Bradley et al

Release Date

2022

Geography

Canada

Language of Resource

English

Full Text Available

Yes

Open Access / OK to Reproduce

Yes

Peer Reviewed

Yes

Objective

In Canada, a federal law was enacted in 2017, the Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act (GSDOA), to provide protection from simple drug possession and related charges when 9-1-1 is called to an overdose. There is limited evidence, however, that the GSDOA has improved rates of intention to call 9-1-1 at overdose events. We therefore sought to examine intent to call 9-1-1 among persons who received GSDOA education and were at risk of witnessing an overdose.

Findings/Key points

A small proportion of the respondents reported that, despite the enactment of GSDOA, they did not intend to call 9-1-1 and those who were aware of the act were more likely to report an intention to call at future overdose events. Increasing GSDOA awareness and/or additional interventions to support the aims of the GSDOA could address ongoing reluctance to seek emergency medical care by people who use drugs

Design/methods

Cross-sectional survey (n=404)

Keywords

Overdose
Social services
Justice system/law enforcement
About PWUD
Harm reduction