A mixed methods evaluation of safer supply initiatives to reduce illicit drug overdose in BC

Funding body

CIHR Project Grant


Since 2016, more than 21,000 Canadians have died of an opioid overdose, with a current rate of 17 deaths per day. The overdose crisis worsened with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, with Western Canada and Indigenous Peoples continuing to be most impacted. In BC, rates of fatal and non-fatal overdoses hit record highs in 2020-21.

Safer supply initiatives (in which people access pharmaceutical grade substances or a regulated supply) are one way that the government and communities are responding to this crisis. This study will evaluate the ongoing implementation and outcomes of safer supply initiatives in BC, including both prescriber-based and grassroots-led models.