Media Contacts

Ministry of Health Communications

250 952-1887 (media line)

Diane Pépin

Communications Coordinator
BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS
Work: 604 682-2344 ext. 66314
Cell: 604 653-5673


The BC Centre on Substance Use (BCCSU)

The BCCSU is a new provincial resource, based at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver, which will host a provincial network of clinicians, educators and researchers aimed at developing and strengthening the provincial system of care for people struggling with problematic substance use. The network will also include policy makers and people who use substances, family advocates, support groups and the recovery community.

The BCCSU is the first of its kind in Canada, focused on addiction research, education and care guidance, and networking with addictions experts throughout the province. It positions B.C. as a leader in establishing evidenced-based addiction treatment and care. Dr. Evan Wood has been appointed as BCCSU director.

In consultation with communities, the BCCSU identified three priority areas to strengthen B.C.’s addiction systems:

  • Increasing understanding and use of evidence-based treatments for addiction;
  • Strengthening education and training of health-care providers; and
  • Developing clinical guidelines as well as monitoring and evaluation across the addiction care continuum, which includes acute hospital care, residential treatment, withdrawal management, recovery services, outpatient treatment and other services in the community.

The BCCSU will address these three key areas by:

  • Improving access to evidence-based care by providing training for health-care providers at all stages of their careers;
  • Expanding evidence through research, evaluation and continuous quality improvement to increase knowledge of evidence-based treatments to influence clinical care, health service delivery and policy; and,
  • Increasing the delivery of evidence-based care through the development and implementation of clinical guidelines, including increased uptake of evidence-based medication therapy, recovery services and psychosocial treatment interventions, improved patient and family experience of care and improved clinical outcomes.

In the face of the province’s overdose crisis, the BCCSU developed a clinical guideline for the treatment of opioid use disorder. The guideline includes education and clinical guidance for physicians and nurse practitioners on the most-effective treatment options for opioid addiction, including buprenorphine/naloxone (Suboxone) and methadone.

The BCCSU will develop and maintain additional provincial treatment guidelines for a range of substance use disorders, as well as help develop best practices for health authorities and establish educational and quality-improvement initiatives.