Opioid-related death rate in Ontario drops in 2022

TORONTO — New data shows the rate of opioid-related deaths in Ontario fell 13% in the first two quarters of this year compared to the previous year.

But opioids still killed Ontarians at a rate 55% higher than in 2019, before the pandemic hit.

Preliminary data from the coroner’s office indicates that 1,278 people died of opioid toxicity in the first six months of this year.

Chief Coroner Dirk Huyer says he hopes the downward trend continues, but laments the tragedy that opioids continue to cause in the province.

Deaths from opioids increased dramatically from the start of the pandemic, killing 2,462 people in 2020 and 2,911 people the following year.

Northern Ontario remains the hardest hit by opioid-related deaths, with the city of Thunder Bay having the worst death rate in the province at 42.4 deaths per 100,000 population – nearly five times the provincial average.


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