College President, Professor Derek Bell OBE said:

“These statistics highlight the continued harm that drugs are causing some of the most vulnerable people in England and Wales. There is a great personal cost to drugs misuse, as well as a financial burden to society. Each year in the UK, drugs cost over £10 billion in policing, healthcare and crime.

“Doctors come across a range of different types of drug responsible for poisoning including illegal substances but also prescription medication, including potent pain killers. Whilst it’s very encouraging that deaths from “legal highs” have reduced, we note in particular the rise of deaths from antidepressants and antipsychotics, as well as cocaine. To avoid complications, patients and carers can seek the advice of a doctor if they have any concerns about taking prescription medication."

Paul Gillen

Contact: Paul Gillen 0131 247 3658