Health

BC Coroners Service Releases 2017 Illicit Drug Death Numbers

The December deaths bring the provisional numbers for the full year of 2016 to a total of 914.

The number of illicit drug deaths in B.C. continues to increase each month with December numbers the highest ever recorded in a single month in the province, according to the latest statistics from the BC Coroners Service.

Provisional data show that a total of 142 persons died as a result of illicit drug use during the month of December, an average of nine every two days.

The December deaths bring the provisional numbers for the full year of 2016 to a total of 914, an increase of almost 80% over the number of deaths in the previous year.

BC takes significant step forward in preventing cancer with HPV announcement

Canadian Cancer Society calls the recent BC Government announcement to provide the HPV vaccine to all genders — significant.

In a media release, the Canadian Cancer Society calls the recent BC Government announcement to provide the HPV vaccine to all genders through schools a significant move forward in public health policy.

The Society believes this change, which will take place in September 2017, will have an enormous impact in reducing children’s future risk of  HPV related cancers.

Gitxsan chiefs add fourth lawsuit opposing Pacific Northwest LNG

Juvenile salmon at Flora Bank, by Lelu Island.  Photo by Tavish Campbell.

Inland B.C. hereditary First Nations chiefs joined coastal ones in announcing a fourth federal lawsuit against Ottawa’s approval of the Pacific Northwest LNG project, at a press conference in Vancouver.  They claim that the gas export terminal is an infringement of their Aboriginal fishing rights.

Two Gitxsan Nation hereditary chiefs—Charlie Wright with the Luutkudziiwus house group, and Yvonne Lattie with the Gwininitxw house group —filed the judicial review on Tuesday morning. 

B.C. extends free HPV coverage to boys

The program is being expanded to Grade 6 Boys to improve protection against a range of HPV-caused cancers that affect both females and males.

Beginning this September, British Columbia will become the latest province to provide the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination to boys, as part of B.C.’s publicly funded immunization program, Health Minister Terry Lake announced Friday.

“We need to do everything we can to help girls and boys grow up to be healthy adults,” said Lake.

Fentanyl a growing problem with more overdose deaths in Kootenay-Boundary in 2016

IH said fentanyl problem is growing more common in the Kootenay-Boundary region, and it increased in 2016. — Photo courtesy Creative Commons

The deadly problem with fentanyl overdoses grew in 2016 in the Kootenay-Boundary, but it is still lower than the regional and provincial rate, says an Interior Health official.

Gillian Frosst, epidemiologist with Interior Health, said the fentanyl problem is growing more common in the Kootenay-Boundary region, and it increased in 2016.

21 flu-related deaths at IH care facilities, outbreaks in Trail and Castlegar

21 flu-related deaths at IH care facilities, outbreaks in Trail and Castlegar

Influenza outbreaks are plaguing longterm care facilities in the Interior Health region, including ones in Castlegar and Trail, according to Pamela De Bruin, IH manager for Communicable Diseases and Immunization Programs.

COLUMN: What Scientists Said 25 Years Ago

One tiny sample of trash pollution: just one symptom.

The longer we delay addressing environmental problems, the more difficult it will be to resolve them. Although we’ve known about climate change and its potential impacts for a long time, and we’re seeing those impacts worsen daily, our political representatives are still approving and promoting fossil fuel infrastructure as if we had all the time in the world to slow global warming.

Cold, cough and influenza season has arrived in Interior Health

If your symptoms are getting worse or you are not recovering, call HealthLink BC at 8-1-1 for medical advice.

It’s that time of year where sniffles, sneezes, and other ailments seem to be lurking around every corner.

In most healthy people, influenza symptoms such as headache, fever, coughing and sneezing and sore throat can last five to seven days. These symptoms are best treated at home by resting, drinking lots of fluids, and taking medicine to lower a fever.
 
Anyone suffering from influenza symptoms should minimize contact with others by staying home from work, school and holiday gatherings to reduce the risk of spreading infection to others.

Give the Gift that Keeps On Giving — register as an organ donor

British Columbians can register online using a computer or mobile device: www.transplant.bc.ca

The B.C. government is urging all British Columbians to get in the holiday spirit and consider giving the greatest gift of all – the gift of life – by registering as an organ donor.

Since Service BC and BC Transplant launched their unique awareness partnership in April 2015, 30,485 new donors have registered through Service BC.

Between April and September of this year, almost 12,000 new registrations were received through Service BC, more than tripling the number over the same period in 2015.

Funding freeze on for new facilities as IHA moves primary care into households: Cusden

The IHA is implementing a five-point strategy for the coming year.

The best way to improve health care delivery in Nelson is not by enhancing its health care facilities, but by keeping potential patients in their homes, says the interim health service administrator for the Interior Health Authority.

Jane Cusden told city council on Monday that the IHA directive for the mostly rural service region — which includes Nelson — is under its primary community care model, one which is preventative in nature, treating people in their homes before they need a hospital.

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