Drug-related Deaths in Scotland

Published by
National Records of Scotland
Publication Date

This report, published by the National Records of Scotland, provides statistics of drug-related deaths in 2018 and earlier years, broken down by age, sex, selected drugs reported, the underlying cause of death and NHS board and council areas.

Key findings:

  • The number of drug-related deaths increased by 27% from 2017 to 2018
  • Most of the increase in drug-related deaths have occurred in the 35-44-year-old and 45-53-year-old age groups.
  • The percentage increase in the number of drug-related deaths was greater for females than for males.
  • Most drug-related deaths are of people who took more than one substance.
  • Scotland's drug-death rate (relative to the number of people aged 15 to 64) is higher than those reported for all the EU countries and Scotland's drug-death rate (per head of population) appears to be almost three times that of the UK as a whole.
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