Wow, does time ever fly. The year 2016 is gone, and 2017 is here! It's been quite some time since I've posted, and I've had several of you reach out to make sure things are alright; so I wanted to take a quick moment to update everyone on how things have been going. TL;DR: Things are good! I can't complain, anyways.
Labelled an effort to fight the growing issue of opioid addiction here within the province of Ontario, the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care has announced that the provincial drug formulary (ODB) will no longer be covering high-dose long-acting opioids over 200mg MED (Morphine Equivalent Dose) as of January 2017.
I am an opioid user who is currently not using. Hold the applause; this isn’t about my “triumph” or whatever you want to call it. The time came for me to stop and I did, how is irrelevant. While I haven’t been using for about six months I am in a relationship with someone who is currently still using intravenously and this means I have to accommodate that fact in my life.
There are plenty of ideas on how to best address the growing opioid epidemic, ranging from harsher enforcement of drug laws, harm reduction initiatives, to the complete legalization of drugs. One of these ideas, creating tamper-resistant or tamper-proof opioids, has been on my personal radar lately. It's a thorny subject, with passionate arguments on both sides. It all begs the question - to tamper-proof, or not to tamper-proof?
I must say, I've been fairly impressed with the changes made by our new Liberal government and Minister of Health, Jane Philpott. While the reaction time has been lagging, some significant steps have been taken in order to help protect the health and lives of Canadians who use drugs. While we aren't even halfway through 2016, let's take a look at what's changed so far this year!
I've never been one to faithfully keep track of my sober dates. I have no idea exactly when I stopped using opiates intravenously; only an approximate guess. However when it came to quitting smoking, I shared many of my struggles through Twitter and here on my Blog, so this time around I do know my exact quit date. As of May 14th, 2016, I will officially have 6 months free of Tobacco and Nicotine. How's it going, you ask? Well... if you're looking for an honest answer, there's good days and bad.
Since starting this blog back in the Spring of 2014, I've received plenty of different questions from my readers and commenters. I've addressed a few of them over time in my various blog posts and tweets, but I wanted to go a step further and address the most common questions I'm asked - all in one place.
This past Friday, I had the opportunity to appear on CBC Radio One's 'The Current' with Anna Tremonti for an episode discussing the rise in Methadone prescribing in Ontario, and whether it has gone too far. The segment, entitled "Methadone treatment overused in Ontario, addiction experts warn", was guest hosted by journalist Connie Walker, and featured guests Dr. David Marsh of the Northern Ontario School Of Medicine, Dr. Benedikt Fischer of the Centre For Addiction And Mental Health, as well as myself.
A pair of articles from the London Free Press has highlighted a disturbing 400% increase in heart valve infections since 2009 amongst intravenous Hydromorph Contin users in London, Ontario.
Before the New Year arrives, I wanted to give an update on how I've been fairing as a non-smoker. I've successfully made it just under 50 days smoke-free now, and it feels amazing. While I struggled through the process of quitting, now that I'm over the biggest hump I've been absolutely fascinated by how little of it was actually physical, and just how much was psychological
By K. Lanktree
- Freelance Writer -
- Blog Mistress -
- Former IV Drug User -
- Methadone Patient -
- Lover of all things Harm Reduction -
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