Canadian Pediatricians Call on Govt to Declare Opioid Crisis a Public Health Emergency

# Canadian Pediatricians Call on Govt to Declare Opioid Crisis a Public Health Emergency
Source: [Global News](

As the opioid crisis death toll continues to rise in Canada, affecting people from all walks of life and, shockingly, an increased number of young people, Canadian pediatricians are calling for this crisis to be declared as a public health emergency.

## A Rising Epidemic
The opioid crisis in Canada is reaching new heights and has continued to evolve with death rates due to opioid-related overdoses increasing by a staggering 364 per cent from 2016 to 2020. Our society’s most vulnerable, the youth, are increasingly falling into its cruel clutches. It has become apparent that not only is the issue getting worse, but it is becoming a problem of concern for the nation’s younger generation.

## Pediatricians Urge for Government Intervention
The Canadian Paediatric Society (CPS) has issued a stern appeal to the government to declare the opioid crisis a public health emergency and introduce a comprehensive, coordinated national action plan. Without such a move, the society fears the crisis will worsen and continue claiming young lives.

## What is the Proposed Plan?
Recognising the severity of the issue at hand, CPS has proposed a plan that includes the following key points:

– Improved access to addiction and mental health services that are youth-specific.
– The establishment of a standardized national system to track pediatric overdose deaths and hospitalizations.
– Effectively refining the prescribing habits of opioids.
– Promoting the use of naloxone to reverse opioid overdoses.
– Comprehensive education on safe use, dangers, and risks of opioid use and misuse.

## Scale of the Crisis Amongst the Youth
Research has shown that opioid-related overdoses are not confined to homeless or criminal circles, but are increasingly impacting younger individuals. Between 2016 and 2020, there was a significant increase in pediatric opioid-related hospitalizations in Canada, with the lifetime prevalence of opioid use among students in grades 7 to 12 reaching as high as 14 per cent.

## Naloxone as Crucial First Aid
CPS has emphasized the importance of promoting naloxone, the life-saving drug that can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose. Naloxone kits should be made widely available in places frequented by the youth such as high schools, youth centers, and drug crisis centers in order to intervene efficiently during an overdose incident.

In conclusion, the current state of the opioid crisis in Canada is alarming, to say the least, pointing towards a pressing need for greater government intervention and a standardized nation-wide policy to manage the situation effectively.

This heightened crisis amongst the youth is indeed concerning and warrants immediate action, not restricted to but including easier access to naloxone and increased resources in addiction and mental health services. The opioid crisis isn’t just an isolated problem to be dealt with on an individual level, but a serious public health emergency that needs a comprehensive approach to ensure that we protect our youth and secure their future.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top