As the fentanyl crisis continues to claim more and more lives every month, people are paying less attention to methamphetamine use in Vancouver; however, the crisis has also reached epidemic proportions.
Indeed, while some other hard drugs have experienced a decrease of use in Vancouver, methamphetamine is on an exponential rise. In fact, statistics convey a dramatic increase in use of up to 600% within the past decade.
CBC ran a story on the crisis that pointed to the drug’s dangerous trend in the lower mainland. They spoke to experts who told them that meth users were struggling with addiction long before fentanyl hit the streets, and the problem isn’t getting better.
“There is no dedicated treatment for methamphetamine addiction. Unlike heroin or other opioids, there aren’t effective forms of substitution therapy, such as methadone or suboxone, to treat it,” reports CBC.
What this means is that health care providers struggle with how to effectively help people with addictions to the drug. What’s more, the drug is popular because it is incredibly cheap. As a result, it makes it a viable alternative for those most marginalized and at highest risk.
The NDP government announced last week that they were reopening Riverview Mental Health Centre. The government hopes that this move will help people struggling with mental health problems that create dependencies to substances.