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Warning: Toxic Drug Supply Identified in City of Kawartha Lakes and Northumberland County

HKPR District Health Unit is seeing an increase in drug poisonings within the community.

Port Hope, ON (April 8, 2024) – The Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit (HKPR District Health Unit) is issuing an alert due to a notable increase in suspected opioid drug poisonings in the City of Kawartha Lakes and Northumberland County.

The HKPR District Health Unit’s Drug Poisoning Opioid Overdose Alert automatically flags increases in overdoses for community partners and first responders, which triggers enhanced outreach efforts and distribution of naloxone kits and harm reduction supplies. Naloxone is an emergency medicine that temporarily reverses the effects of an opioid overdose until the person can get to a hospital for treatment.  

It is important to be aware that the unregulated drug supply may be contaminated with other substances unknowingly. Signs of an opioid overdose include very small pupils, slow or no breathing, cold and clammy skin, blue or purple fingernails or lips, and snoring or gurgling sounds. People may experience heavy sedation and it may be difficult to wake them up.  
Anyone who sees a person overdosing is urged to intervene. Call 9-1-1, give the person naloxone, and start rescue breathing and, or chest compressions. The Good Samaritan Act protects anyone trying to help in an emergency from possible legal repercussions. The Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act also helps protect people on the scene of an overdose from being charged for using or possessing drugs for personal use. 

Harm Reduction and Safe Supplies Keep multiple naloxone kits on hand. Use naloxone in all suspected drug overdoses due to the possibility of opioid contamination or poisoning. Pick up a free Naloxone Kit at Health Unit offices, local pharmacies, and other locations 

  • Test a small amount of the drug before you use it. 
  • Use new supplies and needle disposal bins to reduce harms associated with substance use. 
  • Call the National Overdose Response Service (NORS), virtual safe consumption, at  1-888-668-NORS (6677) or use a buddy system and call a friend. 
  • Call 911 immediately if an overdose is suspected.  

Crisis and Intervention Support 

Reporting a Drug Poisoning or Drug Related Information 
To anonymously report drug poisonings and drug-related information to assist in a more effective response please use the online submission form. 
Local Opioid Overdose Reports 
For weekly reports on opioid overdose incidents within the HKPR District Health Unit area, visit the HKPR District Health Unit’s Opioid Overdose Report. Stay informed and sign up to receive Drug Poisoning alerts from the HKPR District Health Unit. To find more information on Opioids and Naloxone visit

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