Flights of opioids: “I’m going to jump the other side of the counter!”

Vols d’opioïdes: «Je vais sauter l’autre bord du comptoir!»

After dinner, the man is presented at the pharmacy counter Brunet Galleries Charlesbourg, without a prescription. He wanted the Hydromorph Contin, a painkiller five times as powerful as morphine.

The pharmacist, Marie-Josée Vohl, just like his colleagues, believed he recognized the man who had stolen the opioid under the threat of a false weapon, on the 18th of December.

Mrs. Vohl at first refused. But the suspect became more threatening. “He said : “I’m going to jump the other edge of the counter to go get them.” I said to him : “No, it’s going to be ok,”” says the pharmacist.

She has therefore handed over the narcotic. But while his colleagues called 9-1-1, she removed her lab coat and ran behind the suspect into the parking lot. And she saw him get on his vehicle. “I stopped the police and I said : “He just jumped in the Ford Escape black!””

The suspect, Daniel Bourque, age 52, is pulled out of the parking lot. Then, it was soon arrested by the police Department of the City of Quebec at the next junction.

Bourque appeared Tuesday afternoon at the palais de justice de Québec is facing two counts of robbery, one on Monday and one on 18 December. He was also accused of having driven a vehicle while he was prohibited from doing so.

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Coveted by thieves

Very addictive and popular in the street, opioids are the prescription drugs most stolen in Canada.

The pharmacists of the country reporting more than half a million of prescription drugs stolen each year. And painkillers make up the vast majority of these flights, reveal to Health Canada data obtained under the law on access to information by the CBC.

“It is sought-after on the black market,” says Julie Villeneuve, a spokesman for the College of pharmacy. The thieves know that pain relievers are popular among drug addicts and they are trying to rob the pharmacy, ” she explains. Often, they do this by falsifying the ordinances.

“When we echo that there are several flights in a region, it sometimes sends messages to pharmacists with security measures,” said the door-word of the Order. An alert is also provided for prescription forgeries.

The theft of painkillers is all the more worrying that these drugs lead to overdoses-sometimes fatal.

July 2017 to September 2018, there were 480 deaths related to poisoning is suspected opioid or other drug in Quebec, according to the national Institute of public health of Quebec.

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PHARMACISTS SAGUENÉENS MOBILIZED AGAINST ROBBERIES

Guylaine Rousseau could not stand idly by after a wave of thefts of pain medication in the pharmacies of Jonquière, in 2017.

Itself the victim of a robbery perpetrated by a man with a fake gun who wanted to in particular, Dilaudid, Ms. Rousseau has mobilised many actors of his area to prevent a crisis of opioids and its repercussions.

The pharmacist has called on the local mp, Sylvain Gaudreault. And soon, the Sûreté du Québec, public Safety, the Saguenay, the Centre de réadaptation en dépendance (CRD), community organizations, and several pharmacists of Jonquière have gathered their forces to set up the action Committee prevention opioids (CAPO).

Reflection well underway

Guylaine Rousseau believes that the reflection is very well underway in regards to the strategies of prevention “at the source”. The reflection on the security measures to be put in place in the pharmacies, however, is more embryonic.

Ms. Rousseau wondered if the pharmacies could not inspire banks to learn how to better cope with the robberies.

A year and a half after the launch of the CAPO, they fear another wave of thefts of narcotics from pharmacies of Jonquière. “This is why we need to continue to work,” she said.

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