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Rise in Red Deer drug-overdose calls lead RCMP to issue warning

RCMP in Red Deer are sounding the alarm over an increase in accidental drug overdoses in the central Alberta city.

Mounties say in a media release they have received “reliable information” of an increase in emergency service calls for them.

They say an increase in Red Deer in the use of illicit drugs mixed with a tranquilizer called xylazine, which is used to sedate horses among other animals, poses an extreme risk to users.

Mounties also warned that the effects of naloxone, also known by its brand name Narcan, on xylazine or other agents mixed into illicit drugs are unknown. Naloxone can temporarily reverse the effects of an opioid overdose.

People who suspect they’re witnessing an overdose can call 9-1-1 for help.

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