More support is coming for Nova Scotians living with opioid use disorder through an agreement that will help stabilize programs and services and improve wait times for those who need treatment.
Over four years, the bilateral agreement between the province and the federal government, includes $3.1 million from Health Canada that will be added to $4 million the province is investing.
“Nova Scotia is doing significant work in opioid use disorder treatment – saving lives with naloxone and getting more people into treatment programs,” said Health and Wellness Minister Randy Delorey. “We know opioid use and overdose remains an issue in our communities and that the federal government shares our vision in responding to it.”
This investment is part of a four-year Canada-Nova Scotia Emergency Treatment Fund Bilateral Agreement with Health Canada for initiatives related to opioid use disorder treatment approaches, solutions and services.
“Over a two-year period, 123 people in Nova Scotia lost their lives to opioid-related overdoses. This is nothing short of tragic,” said Health Canada Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor. “This bilateral agreement will make treatment services more accessible to those in need, including people living in remote areas of the province. By working together, we can help stop opioid-related overdoses and save lives.”
Investments will be made in the following areas:
— enhancing existing treatment programs to help further reduce wait lists and wait times for treatment
— building capacity in primary care for treatment by offering counselling by telephone with addictions specialists
— training and education on opioid use disorder for emergency room staff to ensure rapid referral for treatment
The funding agreements are available at https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/substance-use/problematic-prescription-drug-use/opioids/responding-canada-opioid-crisis/emergency-treatment-fund.html .