Updated illicit drug death reports released by BC Coroners Service

In September 2020, there were 127 suspected illicit drug toxicity deaths. This represents a 112% increase over the number of deaths in September 2019 (60) and a 15% decrease from the number of deaths in August 2020 (150).

The BC Coroners Service has published updated reports on illicit drug toxicity deaths to the end of September 2020.

The following are the key preliminary findings of these reports (data is subject to change):

  • In September 2020, there were 127 suspected illicit drug toxicity deaths. This represents a 112% increase over the number of deaths in September 2019 (60) and a 15% decrease from the number of deaths in August 2020 (150).
  • There were about 4.2 illicit drug toxicity deaths per day in September.
  • In 2020, 70% of those dying were aged 30 to 59. Males accounted for 80% of deaths.
  • Vancouver, Surrey and Victoria have experienced the highest number of illicit drug toxicity deaths this year.
  • Both male and female illicit drug toxicity death rates have decreased in recent months from highs in May, June and July.
  • Illicit drug toxicity death rates among all age groups have declined from highs in May, June and July. However, rates among people aged 40 to 59 remain at high levels.
  • No deaths have been reported at supervised consumption or drug overdose prevention sites.