2020 will be the worst year on record for opioid overdoses in Alberta as the province struggles to deal with its own toxic drug epidemic.
Between January and October of this year, 90 people died from opioid overdoses every month.
In total, the province recorded a tragic 904 overdose deaths, 455 of which were a result of accidental opioid overdoses.
In comparison, the last record of 806 deaths was set in 2018.
In Alberta, more people have died from opioid overdoses than they have from the coronavirus. As of Friday, 790 people have died from the coronavirus in Alberta.
According to the Alberta government, new reporting measures were introduced this week to better track opioid use.
On Friday, the government revealed the Alberta Substance Use Surveillance System which officials hope will help them better track the drug epidemic.
“For people who suffer addictions and mental health illness, [the pandemic] just made their life even more difficult,” said Alberta’s associate minister of mental health and addictions, Jason Luan.
“Every life lost is too many. Those are the people who are family members, colleagues, members of our community. It’s awful.”