Experts urge a physician-assisted solution to the opioid crisis (Dr. Christy Sutherland)

Stemming the surge in opioid-related deaths is not simple because it requires tackling a series of overlapping crises. But what is inarguable is that physicians have a central role to play in everything from smarter prescribing of pain drugs to caring for people with addictions living on the streets.

That was the message delivered to delegates at the Canadian Medical Association’s (CMA) 150th annual conference by a panel of experts on Tuesday.

The death rate of drug users has soared because they often do not know what they’re injecting. “It almost makes you nostalgic for the days of heroin,” Christy Sutherland, medical director of the Portland Hotel Society in Vancouver.

Andre Picard reports

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