BC Alcohol and Other Drug (AOD) monitoring project

Funding bodies in 2018/19: BC Provincial Health Services Authority and the BC Ministry of Health

Background: CISUR (then CARBC) was awarded a contract from the Provincial Health Services Authority and Health Canada to pilot a comprehensive alcohol and other drug epidemiological monitoring system for Canada in 2007. Subsequently a number of other funding partners contributed to the full roll-out of this system for British Columbia and some elements were implemented in other Canadian provinces. Key components include rates of hospitalization and death caused by different substances, both legal and illegal, all by local health area; types of drugs seized by police; per capita alcohol sales by local health area; substances used by individuals attending emergency rooms in Victoria and Vancouver; patterns and contexts of use and harms experienced by high-risk drug-using populations in Victoria and Vancouver.

Progress to date: Rates of hospital admissions and deaths from alcohol, tobacco and illicit drugs are reported on the project website for BC’s 89 local health areas, 16 health service delivery areas and 5 health authorities. Data on per capita sales of alcohol are similarly reported across the province. Over 5,000 interviews have been completed since 2008 on high-risk populations of substance users to monitor patterns of use, related harms and use of harm reduction services. Numerous journal articles, in-house statistical bulletins and reports have been completed. Data sets have been made available to faculty and graduate students at UVic, other post-secondary institutions and to visitors to our website. A new interactive AOD Tool has been developed.

Key findings are presented in the facts & stats section of this site. See side navigation for research components.

Upon request, information from the various research components can be put together and organized to create regional profiles that will assist policy-makers within the regions to identify and address unique issues facing their communities.