Skip to main content

New report brings together data on drug misuse

28 February 2017
*Regional statistics are included within this report

An annual report that brings together information from a variety of sources to give a joined-up picture of drug misuse has been published by NHS Digital1.

Statistics on Drugs Misuse 2017 draws together information about drug misuse by adults and children from a number of sources2 including NHS Digital's Hospital Episode Statistics3.

The report contains previously published information and also includes additional new analyses on drug related hospital admissions, which are presented nationally and at local authority level.

It covers topics such as:

  • Drug misuse related hospital admissions (England)
  • Deaths related to drug misuse (England and Wales)4
  • Drug use among adults (England and Wales)5
  • Drug use among children (England)6

Read the full report at:


Notes to editors

1. NHS Digital is the national information and technology provider for the health and care system. Our team of information analysis, technology and project management experts create, deliver and manage the crucial digital systems, services, products and standards upon which health and care professionals depend. During the 2015/16 financial year, NHS Digital published 294 statistical reports. Our vision is to harness the power of information and technology to make health and care better. NHS Digital is the new trading name for the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC). We provide 'Information and Technology for better health and care'. Find out more about our role and remit at

2. Sources for the report include: Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) 2015/16. Deaths data from Office for National Statistics (ONS), 2015. National Drug Treatment Monitoring System (NDTMS), 2015/16. Crime Survey for England and Wales, 2014/15, Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey: Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing, England, 2014. European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction - European drug report - trends and developments, 2016. Smoking, drinking and drug use among young people, England, 2014. What About YOUth? Survey 2014. Substance Misuse among Young People report 2015/16.

3. Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) contains details of all admissions to NHS hospitals in England. It includes private patients treated in NHS hospitals, patients who were resident outside of England and care delivered by treatment centres (including those in the independent sector) funded by the NHS. The HES data presented in this report are for inpatients only, so do not reflect all hospital activity. This should be considered when interpreting the data as practice may vary over time and between regions. In particular, practices vary between hospitals as to whether some procedures are carried out or recorded in outpatient or inpatient settings and any changes in recording and clinical practice can affect the trends in this report.

4. The data source for deaths is the Office for National Statistics (ONS). Deaths were included where the underlying cause was due to drug poisoning and where a drug controlled under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 was mentioned on the death certificate.

5. The main source of data for drug use among adults is the ONS Crime Survey for England and Wales, a continuous survey covering drug use among 16 to 59 year olds.

6. Information is provided from Smoking, Drinking and Drug use among Young People in England (SDD) which surveys pupils in secondary schools across England to provide national estimates and information on the smoking, drinking and drug use behaviours of young people aged 11 - 15. Information is also summarised from What About YOUth? (WAY) which surveys 15 year olds with questions about their health, diet, exercise, bullying, alcohol, drugs and smoking.

7. Public Health England is tomorrow (1st March) launching the latest edition of Health Matters which brings together recommendations for local authorities, NHS services and drug providers to help prevent drug misuse deaths. Join the launch teleconference at 2.15pm by emailing

Last edited: 11 April 2018 5:38 pm