• Past and Upcoming Meetings and Events

  • Featured Resources

  • Research Paper of the Month

  • Research

  • Community Updates and Events

  • In the News

  • Ways to Get Involved


On February 1st, we hosted the webinar: The Ban on Safe Supply: An Alberta Case Study. In October 2022, Alberta underwent changes to their prescribing regulations, and safer supply was effectively banned in the province. These changes restrict prescribing to a small number of clinics and require witnessed dosing. These clinics were renamed Narcotic Transition Services. This case study explored the implications of these prescribing regulation changes, examined the framing used to construct narratives about safer supply and the individuals who accessed these medications, and discussed the outcomes following the ban of safer supply in Alberta.


  • Kate Colizza
  • Patty Wilson

A Q & A session followed their presentation. Click here for the recording, full report, as well as all resources and links shared!


Members are welcome to join our weekly meeting drop-in meetings. It is an interdisciplinary group with prescribers, pharmacists, harm reduction workers, policy folks, nurses, people who use drugs, etc. Right now, we are meeting on Thursdays at 12pm ET. Zoom Link

On Thursday, March 7th at 12pm ET, Claire Snelgrove will be coming to talk about urine drug screens. Claire will talk all about the chemistry and what UDS can and can't do. She's eager to make sure she brings the info that you are looking for, so please let us know if you have any questions you'd like her to address by emailing

You can sign up to present about the work you are doing during one of our future weekly Thursday drop-in meetings by clicking here. Meeting notes and resources can be found on our Google Drive. Want to learn more about our different working groups? Come check out what we've been up to!

Are you a health care provider who is involved in prescribing safer supply, e.g., NPs, MDs, PAs, RNs? If you are interested in attending our next clinician meeting on prescribing safer supply on Wednesday, March 6th at 12pm PT | 3pm ET, please register here.

On March 6th, Claire Snelgrove will be coming to talk about urine drug screens (UDS). Claire will talk all about the chemistry and what UDS can and can't do. She's eager to make sure she brings the info that you are looking for, so please let us know if you have any questions you'd like her to address by emailing

Register now!

Join us this Thursday, February 29th at 12pm ET for the Hot Topic WebinarEthics of Prescribed Safer Supply. This webinar will feature presentations followed by a discussion on the ethics of prescribed safer supply.

Moderator: Dr. Adrian Guta

Speakers: Dr. Alice Virani and Dr. Daniel Buchman

This is a public webinar and everyone is welcome to attend! Closed captioning will be provided in English. Register now!

Register now for our community celebration Coming Together: Celebrating the Magic of Community, Knowledge Exchange, and Solidarity Building - happening on Thursday, March 21st, 2024 from 12 to 2pm ET

Khari Wendall McClelland (facilitator and musician) will lead us in ceremony and celebration, providing an opportunity to use music, art, and stories to reflect on the work we have done together and the relationships we’ve built, and look to how we move forward together.

Register now and stay tuned for more details coming soon!

Key Messages on Safer Supply: The NSS-CoP has assembled key messages on safer supply as well as a series of infographics and social media campaign packages. Updates to these key messages will happen on an ongoing basis as more research, evidence, and information emerges. Check it out now!
To End a Crisis: Vision for BC Drug Policy - CDPC: The Vision for BC Drug Policy is not just a drug policy platform - it is a call to action. This Vision was developed by a provincial working group of civil society organizations and people who use drugs. It provides a clear path forward – one beyond the unregulated drug crisis that is now the direct cause of thousands of fatalities every year.

A Review of Prescribed Safer Supply Programs Across British Columbia: Recommendations for Future Action -  Office of the Provincial Health Officer: To provide information on implementation of the provincial Prescribed Safer Supply (PSS) policy, and recommendations to improve benefits and minimize harms.

Episode 43: Kids on the Block Part 2 - Jade - Crackdown Podcast: Rightwing politicians and media pundits want us to fear safe supply and harm reduction. They say these interventions are putting children and families in danger, when we know the opposite is true. But there is one thing these conservatives are right about: Canadian kids have never been less safe. Not because of harm reduction, but because toxic illicit drugs might fuck up their lives. Or, because toxic illicit drugs might fuck up their parents’ lives. In episode 43, we tell the story of Jade — a 21-year-old harm reduction worker from Saskatchewan whose parents use drugs.

An Evidence Brief: Decriminalization of Currently Illegal Drugs in British Columbia (BC) - Canadian Institute for Substance Use Research: The exemption for decriminalization for personal possession of currently illegal drugs has sparked misunderstandings, misinformation, and controversy. The purpose of this bulletin is to describe drug criminalization and decriminalization, BC’s decriminalization initiative, and implications of this initiative going forward for use by policymakers and the public, including people who use drugs, service providers, media, and others.

Patterns in substance use care among people who died from drug toxicities in Ontario - CATIE and the Ontario Drug Policy Research Network (ODPRN): The ODPRN has produced a series of reports alongside people with lived and living experience of substance use and Public Health Ontario, to support community-based programs responding to the province’s growing drug toxicity crisis. This webinar focuses on the second report in the series, which examines patterns in prior substance use diagnosis, prescribing and treatment engagement among people who use drugs in Ontario. The first report, released last year, explored the role of polysubstance use in overdose deaths. This webinar presents the report’s findings on previous substance use disorder diagnoses, recent non-fatal overdoses and treatment access among people who have lost their lives to accidental deaths involving opioids, benzodiazepines, stimulants and/or alcohol.  People with lived and living experience will discuss how these findings can inform harm reduction interventions and improve access to healthcare and other supportive services for people who use substances.

Risk Mitigation Prescribing Project Follow-up and FAQ Seminar: This seminar is a follow-up to the recently published analysis of the effect of opioid and stimulant Risk Mitigation Guidance dispensations on mortality (Slaunwhite et al., 2024). This seminar was held in response to several inquiries from interested care providers to learn more about the study.

The emergence of Xylazine in Canada - Health Canada: Since 2019, there has been an increase in the number of Xylazine identifications in samples submitted to the Drug Analysis Service (DAS) by Canadian law enforcement agencies. 93% of exhibits containing Xylazine were in powder form. In 2022, 75% of samples containing Xylazine were submitted by law enforcement agencies from Ontario. 79% of Xylazine samples contained 2 to 4 co-occurring substances. Fentanyl was the most frequent co-occurring psychoactive substance, occurring in 93% of samples.

Framework for A Public Health Approach to Substance Use - Canadian Public Health Association: This policy statement provides an overview of what CPHA endorses as a public health approach to substance use across the full range of legal and currently illegal psychoactive substances. It describes the approach that CPHA will use to develop policy advocacy or programmatic work on related topics. The framework encompasses ten key principles. These principles are interconnected and can be adapted depending on context, populations, settings, or substances. Given the prevalence of the negative effects of stigma related to currently illegal psychoactive substances, it is hoped that the consistent application of these principles will lead to a reduction of that stigma.

Upholding dignity and human rights: the Federal Housing Advocate's review of homeless encampments - Canadian Human Right Commission: This final report includes the Advocate’s conclusions about the factors leading to the rise in encampments and, most importantly, the concrete measures that must be taken by all governments to fulfill their human rights responsibilities in order to reduce or eliminate the need for encampments.
NSS-CoP Resource Library: Did you know we have a resource library with OVER 1,500 resources on safer supply? You can access it for FREE anytime. It features academic journal articles, grey literature, knowledge translation materials, clinical practice guidelines, and more!

Ledlie, S., et al. (2024). Prescribed safer opioid supply: A scoping review of the evidence | International Journal of Drug Policy


  • Prescribed safer opioid supply programs continue to expand across Canada.
  • We conducted a scoping review of client outcomes and client/provider perceptions.
  • Generally, program participation is associated with beneficial client outcomes.
  • Large population level studies are required to study rarer outcomes and diversion.
  • More research is needed for program adaption and to address unique regional needs.
Kalicum, J., et al. (2024). The impact of an unsanctioned compassion club on non-fatal overdose | International Journal of Drug Policy

Haines, M., & O’Byrne, P. (2024). Context of Substance Use: Harm Reduction and Safer Supply | Journal of Drug Issues

Bardwell, G., et al. (2024). “The machine doesn't judge”: Counternarratives on surveillance among people accessing a safer opioid supply via biometric machines | Social Science & Medicine

Holland, et al. (2024). “Safer supply” alternatives to toxic unregulated drug markets | BMJ

Simpson, K. A., et al. (2024). Characterizing Opioid Withdrawal Experiences and Consequences Among a Community Sample of People Who Use Opioids | Substance Use & Misuse 

Bradford, W. D., & Lozano-Rojas, F. (2024). Higher Rates Of Homelessness Are Associated With Increases In Mortality From Accidental Drug And Alcohol Poisonings | Health Affairs

Reed, M. K., et al. (2024). Recommendations from people who use drugs in Philadelphia, PA about structuring point-of-care drug checking | Harm Reduction Journal

Tan, M., et al. (2024). Xylazine Use among People Who Inject Drugs, Philadelphia 2022 | Journal of Addiction Medicine

Rammohan, I., et al. (2024). Overdose mortality incidence and supervised consumption services in Toronto, Canada: an ecological study and spatial analysis | The Lancet Public Health

Seo, B., et al. (2024). Understanding the barriers and facilitators to implementing and sustaining Mobile Overdose Response Services from the perspective of Canadian key interest groups: a qualitative study | Harm Reduction Journal

Rosen, J. G., et al. (2024). “Make yourself un-NIMBY-able”: stakeholder perspectives on strategies to mobilize public and political support for overdose prevention centers in the United States of America | Harm Reduction Journal

Ostrach, B., et al. (2024). “When people who use drugs can’t differentiate between medical care and cops, it’s a problem.” Compounding risks of law Enforcement Harassment & Punitive Healthcare Policies | Health & Justice

MacKinnon, N., et al. (2024). Factors associated with frequent buprenorphine / naloxone initiation in a national survey of Canadian emergency physicians | PLOS One

Caruana, T. (2024). Opioid agonist treatment and trust in the community pharmacy setting: a qualitative study of perceptions and experiences | Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy

Wu, P. E., & Austin, E. (2024). Xylazine in the illicit opioid supply | Canadian Medical Association Journal

Bowles, J. M., et al. (2024). Media framing xylazine as a “zombie drug” is amplifying stigma onto people who use drugs | International Journal of Drug Policy

Tanz, L. J., et al. (2024). Routes of Drug Use Among Drug Overdose Deaths — United States, 2020–2022 | Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
National and General News: British Columbia:
Yukon, Northwest Territories, and Nunavut: Quebec (et en français s'il vous plaît!):
Atlantic Region (Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador):

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