Lake declared ‘hero’ for work on opioid crisis

published on June 7, 2017 by James Peters in CFJC Today

KAMLOOPS — Four years to the day after he was appointed BC’s Minister of Health, Terry Lake has been honoured for his leadership in addressing the province’s opioid crisis.

At a breakfast in Halifax this morning, Lake was given the National Public Health Hero award by the Canadian Public Health Association (CPHA).

In recognizing Lake, the CPHA said he provided “unwavering support… for the declaration of a public health emergency and the subsequent actions to stem the tide of tragic deaths from illegal drug overdoses in BC.”

Speaking to CFJC News from Halifax, Lake said he was honoured to receive the award, and that a lot of groundbreaking work has been done in BC since the declaration of a public health emergency in 2016.

“In the nomination, they said without what we have done, we would have lost hundreds and hundreds of more lives,” said Lake.

“While there is still much more work to be done, we’ve done more than any other jurisdiction, and I, of course, just represent all of the people behind the scenes that have put such great work into this.”

“I really accepted it on behalf of all of the people in public health in British Columbia: the ministry support that I’ve had, the health authorities, people like (Provincial Health Officer) Dr. Perry Kendall and (Deputy Provincial Health Officer) Dr. Bonnie Henry who have played such an important role, and of course health authorities including IH that have done so much to prevent further deaths, although there’s much more to do still.”

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