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SUBSTANCE USE AND MISUSE DURING COVID-19

The Substance Abuse Advisory Council Secretariat (SAACS) advises the public on the need to be mindful of substance use and misuse, especially at this time. It is important to note that the harmful consequences are not experienced only by the users but also their family and by extension the community.

For this reason, persons are encouraged to be mindful of use so that exposure to smoking, alcohol consumption and other substance use can be minimized and if possible eradicated.

The harmful consequences of substance use and misuse including alcohol pose harm both on one’s physical and social health. It creates a means of depleting the existing health resources and also social issues like domestic violence and child maltreatment and abuse.

Exposure to substance abuse further places vulnerable groups in a more susceptible position, thus compromising their immune system. While we understand that persons may feel bored or anxious, the Ministry of Health encourages persons to take this opportunity to bond with family and take greater measures to remain safe by following the hygiene guidelines, the use of 311 for additional support and services and the other toll-free numbers being circulated on social media.

“At this time, we remind you of one of our popular slogans…Be bright…don’t light and be mindful that substance use and misuse will further complicate our existing situation.”

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