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Featured Projects

BC Drug Use Epidemiology

All available data related to substance use in BC is now available here in 7 short chapters!

This compiled report is brought to you by the BC Drug Overdose & Alert Partnership, a multi-sectoral committee established in 2011 to prevent and reduce the harms associated with substance use.

Communicating Drug Alerts

Alert posters are a great way to let people know about issues in your community.

We interviewed some service providers & peers about what messages should be included in these alerts.

Substance Use Trends

To understand differences in high-risk drug use, a BC-wide survey was initiated in 2012 at existing harm reduction supply distribution sites.

Regional differences in drug use have been identified and are informing harm reduction planning to improve health in this marginalized population. The 2012 & 2013 survey results can be found here.

Canadian Best Practice Recommendations

We worked with a team of researchers, service providers and people with lived experience to develop comprehensive recommendations to ensure that people who use drugs have access to high-quality services that prevent the spread of HIV, Hepatitis C and other infections.

Take Home Naloxone (THN) Program

Naloxone is a medication that reverses the effects of an overdose from opioids, such as heroin, methadone, and morphine.

BC has developed a Take Home Naloxone (THN) Program to help prevent overdoses and save lives.

Perceptions of People Who Smoke Crack Cocaine

This study explores the perceptions of persons who smoke crack cocaine in Vancouver regarding its use, effects and impacts on their health.

Perceptions of risk and suggestions related to harm reduction supplies and services are examined.

Health Effects from Tainted Cocaine

Cocaine in B.C. has been found to contain a substance called levamisole which can cause a condition called agranulocytosis that dramatically reduces white blood cells.

The Harm Reduction Journal published our research findings on the cases in BC and Alberta and how doctors can better treat patients after exposure.



Search for harm reduction sites in BC.


Overdose Awareness Day 2015

August 25th, 2015

Overdoses happen. What leads to an overdose, what that overdose looks like and what the overdose response should be differs by substance type. On International Overdose Awareness Day, we are launching a series of posters that explain overdose risks, overdose signs and the appropriate overdose response for stimulants, opioids and alcohol. We encourage you to share these posters within your networks to prevent harms associated with overdoses.

Click on the images below to download posters about stimulant, opioid or alcohol overdoses.

 Stimulants Opioids Alcohol 



Reduce Hard

About Us

The Harm Reduction Program is part of the BC Centre for Disease Control. We believe every person has the right to the best health possible and should be treated with dignity and respect.

We advocate for a community-based participatory model where patients are partners. We see ourselves as 'co-learners' meaning we understand that clients are the ‘experts’ with lived experiences and, to reciprocate, we are open and share our knowledge and our expertise. We believe in including people who use illegal drugs from across BC in policy decisions and program changes.

About Harm Reduction

Harm reduction aims to keep people safe and minimize death, disease, and injury from high-risk behaviour. Harm reduction involves a range of support services and strategies to enhance the knowledge, skills, resources, and supports for individuals, families and communities to be safer and healthier.

The evidence shows it works and has many benefits for people who use substances, their families, and communities.

Educate about Safer Sex


a) CCSA releases report on fentanyl related deaths across Canada (Aug 2015). 

b) BC public health & law enforcment agencies launch Know Your Source?: Be Drug Smart campaign to raise awareness of illicit fentanyl-related harms (Mar 2015)

Supply Catalogue

Read Our Ezine

Jul 2015