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  1. mopsie
    <H3>Illegal drug use could account for 1 million visits a year to emergency care in England</H3>Category: Alcohol/Addiction/Illegal Drugs News
    Article Date: 20 Nov 2005[​IMG]

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    Illegal drug use could account for up to 1 million visits a year to emergency care departments and 400,000 admissions to hospital in England, suggests research in Emergency Medicine Journal.

    The findings are based on anonymous interviews with patients visiting an inner city hospital emergency care department in South West England during a typical week.

    The treating doctor was also asked to assess whether the patient's need for treatment was indirectly or directly related to illicit drug use.

    In all, 1070 patients sought emergency care during the week, 801 of whom were interviewed.

    Over a third (36%) admitted to illicit drug use at some time during their lives, and 16% said they had used illegal drugs in the previous month. Almost one in 10 said they had "used" within the previous 24 hours.

    The treating doctor judged that the reason for seeking emergency care was directly or indirectly related to their drug use in just under 7% of cases.

    Twenty-three patients had to be admitted to hospital, representing just under 3% of all those interviewed. The most common reasons for admission included self harm, skin infections, chest pain and deep vein thrombosis.

    The authors say the findings of lifetime illegal drug use more or less match those reported in the British Crime Survey. But the figures for drug use within the preceding month are nearly three times as high. This suggests that recent or current drug use greatly increases the risk of requiring emergency care, they say.

    "…with annual Emergency Department attendances currently exceeding 14 million in England alone, it is possible that illegal drugs contribute directly or indirectly to 1 million ED attendances and 40,000 acute hospital admissions in England each year," they conclude.

Comments

  1. Dualpower


    Extrapolating drug-related visits from an inner city ER unit ought to give you an accurate number for sure! [​IMG]
  2. turfshark_40

    thats why you can't trust statistics, even those given by supposedly unbiased publications. (I'm not from England, but the Emergency Medicine Journal sounds like that kind of thing.)
  3. sands of time
    Umm, maybe I am not runderstanding this fully, but the article says "16% said they had used illegal drugs in the previous month. Almost one in 10 said they had "used" within the previous 24 hours." So less than 2% of the people sent to the ER has used drugs in the last 24 hours, thats not a very strong percent.

    And the %36 who admitted drug use in they're lives??? What is that supposed to mean? 40-50 percent of the population probably tried drugs in they're lives, you would expect that some of them would end up in the hospital one way or the other, passed drug use probably had little or no effect on that. If anything, alcohol and tobacco probably had alot more to do with the ER visits, as many drug users alos cosume alcohol regularly and smoke cigarettes.
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