The Ontario Medical Association says there has been an increase in overdose deaths over the last couple of years.

That coincides with the arrival of the pandemic.

Dr. Lisa Lefebvre says there is one drug more than any other causing the overdoses.

"With respect to opioids, it most definitely is fentanyl and that is something that is change in pattern that was occurring pre-pandemic," Dr. Lefebvre told a panel organized the OMA recently.

"The rates, if you look, year to year at the Canadian data, with respect to apparent opioid related opioid poisoning deaths, they have been increasing pre-pandemic."

Dr. Lefebvre adds that drugs aren't the only substance that's seen an increase in usage.

"We've also seen an increase in rates, particularly of alcohol during the pandemic period with respect to binge drinking.   And that is the most common misused substance across the whole population.  But the opioid crisis in terms of lethality, certainly continues unabated."

Dr. Lefebvre says opioid addition not only affects the quality of life but also the length of life of the people using those drugs.