When a dangerous substance is circulating the southwest, residents can now be alerted through a new provincial system.

The province announced the launch of the Drug Alert System yesterday morning. Drug alerts aim to meet at-risk people where they are through text, email, and the Alertable app, allowing them to customize the warnings they wish to receive.  

Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, Tim McLeod, stressed that the goal is to educate the public and highlight the risks of using illicit substances.  

“We know that the drugs are killing people,” he said. “They're toxic, they're lethal. This is another way that we can really get the message out to the community from a reliable source that these dangers exist.” 

The system is an initiative that is under the Saskatchewan Drug Task Force (SDTF), which is made up of several agencies including police, RCMP, social services, the Saskatchewan Health Authority, and more. 

Alerts are issued when one of the reliable partners reports to the Ministry of Health that more than an expected number of individuals has been seen by paramedic, or in hospital, with an overdose over a short period of time; multiple severe outcomes (ICU admissions, deaths) have occurred over a short period of time; there have been multiple overdoses in persons who use or live in the same area or who report use of a common substance; there have been overdoses that are difficult to reverse with naloxone; or there are concerning substances in circulation that have the potential to cause harm or death. 

Signup information is available here