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posted by martyb on Tuesday February 21 2017, @08:13AM   Printer-friendly
from the higher-availability dept.

More organs have become available for transplant in British Columbia, Canada, due to a rise in drug overdoses:

After a brutal year where more than 900 people died of drug overdoses in British Columbia, doctors are pointing to one morbid upside. It might sound like something out of a dystopian horror comic, where drug users are wiped out and harvested for organs. New stats released by the health agency responsible for organ transplants show that's not exactly a far-off nightmare anymore. Health officials have noticed a significant uptick in organ donor deaths, and say that fentanyl is likely playing a role. According to BC Transplant, the number of organ donors in the first weeks of 2017 has doubled over this time last year, from 10 to 20. That's resulted in 59 transplants, up from 37 organs over the same period in 2016.

[...] "We started tracking the connection between fentanyl and organ donation more closely at the start of 2017, and fentanyl has been a contributing factor in about a quarter of our donors so far this year." BC Transplant's statement cautions against drawing conclusions based on a small amount of recent data. But long term trends show the proportion of organ donors dying from overdose has gone up steadily over many years. Back in 2013, 7.5 percent of organ donors tested positive for drugs. In 2016, that number rose to 22.7 percent.

Previously: Opioid Addiction is Big Business
Obama Administration Expands Access to Suboxone Treatment
DEA Welcomes Kratom to the Schedule I List Beginning September 30
Heroin, Fentanyl? Meh: Carfentanil is the Latest Killer Opioid
The Calm Before the Kratom Ban

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 21 2017, @06:33PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 21 2017, @06:33PM (#469807)

    I had been hopeful that maybe, just maybe the USA would see the light as concerns substance prohibition. It figured it out once with alcohol, but it can't seem to generalize from that example. It tried with cannabis which seems to have led to similar (beneficial for society) results, but that will all be rolled back soon. This opioid epidemic is especially hilarious to me. You could legalize and regulate them, and that way people who use different kinds of opioids would at least have a chance of managing their habits with properly, accurately labeled product or even seeking help in the open. However, it just fits in too nicely with your authoritarian worldview when somebody takes what they think will be their usual dosage of heroin only to wake up dead because it had been mixed with fentanyl. You all also know goddamned well that even just legalizing cannabis greatly reduces overdoses of this entirely different class of drug.

    You are becoming a "3rd world" country, USA, just like those places mommy and daddy used to talk about that didn't even have basic plumbing and were too backwards to even participate in the Cold War. You know, like one of those nasty places where the head of state pays off the local police to assassinate suspected "drug dealers." You just haven't realized it yet because of the massive amount of wealth you still possess.

    I would bet that even a billionaire can eventually spend through his entire fortune partying and living it up in Ibiza with supermodel escorts hanging off his arm and every last sports car you could ever want to drive to wind up in the end homeless and destitute.

    You are cruel and barbaric, and the day will come soon when you wake up to consequences.

    More organ donors? You sound like a "functional alcoholic" making excuses for his habit to me.

    I don't know where we go from here, but you will wake up with a hangover, if you wake up at all from this bender.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 22 2017, @04:34AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 22 2017, @04:34AM (#469996)

    Well, you're a bit misguided. That's Vancouver, Canada, not Vancouver, USA, in the article.