Substance abuse on the rise in Canada

01 June 2018
Substance abuse on the rise in Canada

A 2016 Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) “drug analysis report,” shows how the rate of abuse of fentanyl and synthetic drugs like GBL (the precursor for date rape drug GHB), which mainly originate from China, have increased dramatically since 2014. While the opioid crisis continues to spread across Canada, the seizures of drugs like cocaine and opium have also increased in recent years.

Each year 47,000 deaths in Canada are related to substance abuse (Health Officer’s Council of British Columbia), and street youth are 11 times more likely to die of drug overdose or suicide. In Ontario, 23% of students stated they had been offered, sold, or given drugs in school in the past year (approx. 219,000 students). Substance abuse has cost the Canadian Government (CD)$8bn.  

Drug overdose has become a significant public health issue in Toronto as it has across the country. Between 2004 and 2014 there was a 77% increase in the reported number of people dying from overdose in Toronto – from 146 in 2004 to 258 in 2014, the highest annual number to date. Of particular concern is the increasing role of opioids, such as heroin and fentanyl in these deaths. Canadian methamphetamine products have been seized around the world, in Australia, the United States and even Japan. 83% of all methamphetamine seized in Australia was traced back to Canadian sources. Ecstasy exported from Canada has been seized in countries such as Japan, the United States, Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands.


Visit Randox Toxicology at CSCC in Ottawa, Canada, from the 3rd – 6th June 2018. Come and learn about the Evidence MultiSTAT, the most advanced screening technology on the market alongside our unrivalled toxicology test menu, capable of detecting over 500 drugs and drug metabolites.

Don’t miss our workshop on Monday 4th June, on initial method validation of the Randox MultiSTAT system in a routine clinical biochemistry laboratory by our Director of Sales for North America, Pankaj Sinha.




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