Stimulating debate, changing practice and influencing policy in tackling drug-related deaths in the UK, Europe and USA

Impact: Health and wellbeing, Policy


Deaths due to drug misuse are an increasingly common cause of premature mortality. At The University of Manchester we carried out the largest studies of drug-related mortality ever conducted internationally, based on a national cohort of persons treated for drug misuse and with criminal justice system involvement. We highlighted the protective effect of opioid substitution treatment. Our findings have enhanced understanding of the drivers of drug-related mortality or practitioners, policymakers, governments and the public, and guided clinical responses and national policies. We have stimulated debate on the key role of opioid substitution treatment in reducing fatal overdose, contributing to national policy and to changes in practice, affirming the importance of harm reduction to reduce risk.

Impact dateSept 2015Apr 2020
Category of impactHealth and wellbeing, Policy
Impact levelBenefit