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Child brought to CHEO after putting syringe in mouth at Ottawa park: paramedics

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Ottawa paramedics say a 2-year-old girl was taken to CHEO as a precaution Saturday after she found a syringe at a local park and put it in her mouth.

The Civic Hospital Neighbourhood Association posted to Facebook to say that used needles and drug paraphernalia had been spotted on the play structure at Princess Margriet Park on Fairmont Avenue Saturday and that a child had come into contact with a needle.

Ottawa paramedics told CTV News they were called to an area nearby just before 11:30 a.m. after a mother noticed her child had an uncapped syringe in her mouth. According to paramedics, the mother said other items, including a tourniquet and crumpled up aluminum foil, were nearby.

The girl was assessed at the scene and did not require Naloxone, paramedics said. She was taken to hospital in stable condition.

Last week, Ottawa police, Ottawa paramedics, Ottawa Public Health and the Overdose Prevention and Response Taskforce issued an alert about the toxic drug supply in the city. Data from Ottawa Public Health suggest at least 22 people in the city died from suspected drug overdoses in January.

Paramedics also warned that needle injuries can spread bloodborne diseases, such as hepatitis.

CTV News spoke to several residents near the park on Sunday.

"I think it’s scary," said resident Jamie Lafreniere. "Usually, the community would like to go out and check things out, but in the wintertime, it’s probably a bit more difficult than the summer."

Resident Will Leffler was also concerned.

"It’s a fairly busy park. It’s well used I would say," Leffler said. "You would see maybe up to 20 kids there in the evening. Depending on the time of year."

"Wishing them the best of course and to anyone affected."

The Civic Hospital Neighbourhood Association urged residents to be vigilant and report any discarded needles to 3-1-1.  

With files from CTV News Ottawa's Natalie van Rooy

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