Impact of drug-related deaths

For the last 10 years, the annual number of acute drug deaths reported by EU countries in total has varied between 7 000 and 9 000 (29). These figures can be considered as minimum estimates as it is likely that in most countries there is some level of under-reporting (which could sometimes be substantial). Most of the victims are young people and, in addition, many of these deaths are preventable.

Despite some encouraging findings of a stabilisation or decrease in the number of drug-related deaths in some EU countries, in many other EU countries (and in other parts of the world) overdose deaths continue to increase.

(29) See Statistical Table 24: Number of ‘acute drug-related deaths’ recorded in EU countries (according to national definitions used to report cases to the EMCDDA), 1985–2001.