Opioids: A Public Health Crisis

Opioids: A Public Health Crisis

Last year, there were nearly 4,000 opioid-related deaths across Canada. In this special web series, The Walrus delves into the stories behind these statistics. Read the features, watch the explainer video, follow the timeline of opioid use

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Opioids: A Public Health Crisis


In Canada, sixteen people are hospitalized every day from opioid poisoning on average. Last year, there were nearly 4,000 opioid-related deaths across the country. In this special web series, The Walrus delves into the stories behind these statistics to look at the lives of those affected by these drugs, the devastating effects of the crisis, and what can be done—today and in the future—to address it

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My Life and Death on Opioids
By Chris Willie
In November 2017, The Walrus started working with Chris Willie on a memoir about his fentanyl addiction. While writing the article, Willie died from an overdose. This version of his story is published with his family’s approval

Four Unlikely Activists
By Sandi Tantardini, Leigh Chapman, Jennifer Johnston, and Judith Rossman
These women lost children and siblings. How grief pushed them to act

2017 Was Canada’s Worst Year yet for Overdose Deaths
By The Walrus Staff

A by-the-numbers look at the country’s skyrocketing opioid-overdose rates




Rural Canada Faces its own Opioid Crisis
By Sharon J. Riley
In remote Alberta, a person can go for days without seeing much of anyone. So what happens if you’re overdosing?

What’s Inside a Naloxone Kit?
By the walrus staff
How the life-saving medication works

How Do We Protect Our Kids from the Opioid Crisis?
By Vesna Plazacic
Why some parents want the power to involuntarily admit their children to treatment programs

The Case for Assisted Drug Injection
By Wendy Glauser
Helping users with their drugs may sound like a counterintuitive fix to the opioid crisis, but it can save lives

The Other Side of Fentanyl
By Teva Harrison
I have terminal cancer, and without the powerful painkiller, I live in agony

Saying No to Drugs Isn’t an Answer to Addiction
By CARLYN ZWARENSTEIN
Why one Ottawa doctor believes harm reduction is the most effective treatment for drug use

Credits

Produced by Lauren McKeon, Natalie Vineberg, and Angela Misri
Editing by Lauren McKeon, Daniel Viola, and Harley Rustad
Digital presentation by Angela Misri, Dmitry Benjaminov, and Judy Ziyi Gu
Art direction by Natalie Vineberg
Research by Amy Van Den Berg, Sebastian Leck, and Daina Goldfinger
Fact-checking by Viviane Fairbank, Allison Baker, Jonah Brunet, Nathaniel Basen, Erica Ngao, Seila Rizvic, Nicole Schmidt, Amy Van Den Berg, Sebastian Leck, Daina Goldfinger, and Allie Downham





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