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National Statistics
Publication, Part of

Statistics on Drug Misuse - England, 2009

Official statistics, National statistics
Publication Date:
Geographic Coverage:
England, Wales
Geographical Granularity:
Local Authorities, Regions, Country, Government Office Regions
Date Range:
01 Jan 2008 to 31 Dec 2009


Note:Due to a formatting issue, the footnotes to tables 3.4, 3.5 and 3.7 were not completely presented. Corrections to the formatting have been made on 30 November 2009 in the report document ("Statistics on Drug Misuse: England, 2009. Report") to fully display all the relevant footnotes. No other changes have been made to this publication. We apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused.

This annual statistical report presents information on drug misuse among both adults and children. It includes a focus on young adults.

The topics covered include:

  • prevalence of drug misuse, including the types of drugs used;
  • trends in drug misuse over recent years;
  • patterns of drug misuse among different groups of the population; and
  • health outcomes related to drug misuse including hospital admissions, drug treatment and number of deaths.

The bulletin also summarises Government plans and targets in this area, as well as providing sources of further information and links to relevant documents.

The bulletin draws together data from a variety of different sources and presents it in a user-friendly format.

Most of the data contained in the bulletin have been published previously by The NHS Information Centre, the Home Office, Office for National Statistics or the National Treatment Agency for Substance Misuse. Previously unpublished figures on drug-related admissions to hospital are presented using data from The NHS Information Centre's Hospital Episode Statistics.

Key Facts

In England and Wales:

· In 2008/09, 10.1% of adults (aged 16 - 59) had used one or more illicit drug within the last year, compared with 9.6% in 2007/08. However, over the longer term this shows an overall decrease from 11.1% in 1996.

· In 2008/09, around 22.6% of young adults (aged 16 - 24) had used one or more illicit drug in the last year, which shows no change from 2007/08. This shows a long term decrease from 1996 when it was 29.7%.

· There has been an overall decrease in drug use reported by 11- 15 year olds since 2001. The prevalence of lifetime drug use fell from 29% in 2001 to 22% in 2008.

· The total number of deaths related to drug misuse in England and Wales was 1,738 in 2008; 78% of those who died were male. The most popular underlying cause of death was from accidental poisoning for both males and females (597 and 166 respectively).


In England:

· In 2008/09, there were 5,668 admissions to hospital with a primary diagnosis of a drug-related mental health and behavioural disorder. This number is 15.1% less than in 2007/08 when there were 6,675 admissions. There were more male than female admissions (3,997 and 1,671 respectively).

· During 2008/09, there were 207,580 people in contact with structured drug treatment services (those aged 18 and over). This is a 10.4% increase from the 2007/08 figures, where the number was 187,978.


Last edited: 11 April 2018 5:21 pm