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FIRST READING: B.C. tells nurses to ignore rising phenomenon of armed patients doing drugs in hospitals – Vancouver Sun

Apr 05, 2024

In a leaked memo, hospital workers told not to confiscate weapons and to allow the free passage of drug dealers

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In one of the more controversial milestones of B.C.’s push to solve addiction via “destigmatization,” a leaked memo has emerged instructing nurses to stop confiscating weapons from hospital patients, and to allow them to do illicit drugs in their rooms.

“Patients can use substances while in hospital in their rooms,” reads a July 2023 memo issued by Northern Health, the provincial health agency serving the region spanning roughly from Prince George to the Yukon border.

Hospital staff are told only to supply the patient with a Narcan kit in case they overdose, and to suggest they do the drugs outside if they happen to be smoking crack, meth or tobacco. “Smoke Free Grounds policy still applies,” it reads.

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