There has been an increase in overdose-related 911 calls this year compared to the same time last year, according to the Region of Waterloo’s overdose monitoring system.

The region says at the end of July there were a total of 467 calls and for the same period in 2017 there were 433 calls.

There is also a difference in the number of Naloxone kits being administered.

So far this year, first responders have used the kits 53 times. That’s down by nearly half compared to the 97 kits administered last year.

Officials say one particularly alarming statistic is the number of drug-related deaths.

The monitoring system is reporting a total of 85 opioid-related deaths in 2017.

In response to the crisis, the Region of Waterloo Public Health has teamed up with the Waterloo Region Drug Integration Strategy and released a series of public service announcements.

The region had also previously announced proposed safe consumption sites and is working through public consultations before a location is selected.