The Global Drug Survey 2018 has officially launched and is seeking the views and experiences of people who use alcohol and other drugs, across the world, including Scotland.
Each year the Global Drugs Survey is conducted in partnership with media and harm reduction partners across the world, including Scottish Drugs Forum.
Now in its fifth year, the study looks at how recreational drugs are used and identifies any emerging trends that authorities, policy-makers and the public should be aware of.
The 2017 survey spoke to 120,000 people from over 50 nations and received feedback from 708 people in Scotland.
The information gathered from people using substances in Scotland is useful in determining appropriate service provision, higlights emerging trends and provides an opportunity to develop effective responses.
Key findings for Scotland in 2017:
- People in Scotland are more likely to seek emergency department treatment for Cocaine, MDMA and alcohol than in the rest of the UK
- Scotland has higher rates of consumption of illegal drugs than the global average
- The top three drugs people reported using in Scotland within the last 12 months were cannabis, MDMA and Cocaine
- Scotland have significantly higher levels of people reporting hazardous drinking scores than the global averages for both men and women.
- 30% or cannabis users and 36% of cocaine users would like to use less with smaller numbers saying they would like treatment to do so highlighting a need for continued emphasis on harm reduction information and services for a cohort who are unlikely to access mainstream treatment and perhaps more likely to utilise emergency services
Key findings for wider UK in 2017:
- Greater purity drugs have lead to a doubling of the number of UK cocaine users being admitted to A&E in the last two years
- The rate at which UK drug users are buying drugs on the Darknet has doubled since 2014
- There has been a major rise in the number of UK drugs users experimenting with psychedelics