Key Irish Data > Deaths Data

The National Drug-Related Deaths Index (NDRDI) provides information about the number of deaths by drug and alcohol poisoning; and deaths among drug users and people who are alcohol dependent in Ireland.The most recent information was published in December 2016.

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The Irish NDRDI records cases of death by drug and/or alcohol poisoning (such as those due to accidental or intentional overdose), and deaths among drug users and those who are alcohol dependent (such as those due to hepatitis C and HIV). The NDRDI is maintained by the Health Research Board. It is jointly funded by the Department of Health and the Department of Justice and Equality.  

The information is used to develop health and social service responses aimed at reducing the number of deaths. The number of drug-related deaths and deaths among drug users is one of the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction key indicators to measure the consequences of drug use. The National Drug-Related Death Index Steering Committee provides advice to the researchers on the development of the data collection protocol, the methodology for interpreting inconclusive cases, and pathology and toxicology 

Staff from the NDRDI collect data from Coroner Service files relating to all deaths among alcohol dependent person, all deaths where a history of drug use was recorded or where drug or alcohol misuse was implicated in the death. Data from the other agencies is collected in electronic format. 

The data is collected from a number of sources, including:

  • The Coroner Service;
  • The General Mortality Register;
  • The Central Treatment List;
  • HIPE  

The information collected includes:

  • Administrative details
  • Demographic details
  • Socio-economic information
  • Problem drug use at the time of death
  • Risk behaviours
  • Drug treatment history
  • Details about the death itself
  • Medical diagnosis.

This information is used to define accurately the extent of the problem, to inform policy and to assess the effectiveness of responses aimed at preventing deaths from drug or alcohol misuse. The Health Research Board is the data controller with overall responsibility for the data.

If you wish to request data please write to Suzi Lyons.

Include the following information:

  • The research question(s)
  • The method of analysis
  • The exact data and data format required
  • The composition of the research team including the principal investigator
  • A statement that ethical approval has been obtained
  • The expected outcomes of the research (including the dissemination process)

Data will only be provided on the understanding that it is used only for the purpose stated in the written request.  A Memorandum of Understanding will be completed between you and the NDRDI.

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