Home > Non-fatal overdose among people who inject drugs in England: 2017 report.

Public Health England. (2017) Non-fatal overdose among people who inject drugs in England: 2017 report. London: Public Health England.

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The unlinked anonymous monitoring (UAM) survey of people who inject drugs (PWID) is an annual survey with the aim to measure the level of HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C in this population. The survey also monitors the levels of risk and protective behaviours among PWID. The survey recruits people who inject drugs that are in contact with a sample of specialist drug services (such as needle and syringe programmes and addiction treatment centres) throughout England, Wales and Northern Ireland.


In response to the rising numbers of drug overdose deaths both globally and in the UK, the survey has included questions on non-fatal overdose and naloxone (opioid overdose antidote) administration since 2013. A first summary report on the data generated by these questions is published here.


Overdose poses a significant risk among people who inject drugs (PWID) and is a major cause of mortality. There has been a notable rise globally in overdose deaths, with the US reporting a tripling from 1999-2017, alongside significant increases in Australia and Canada. Whilst the UK has a lower rate of overdose deaths than the US, it is higher than the rest of Europe, and there have been similar increasing trends in overdose deaths in recent years. Considerable investigation and response into the extent of these trends has occurred, however there is limited data available for non-fatal overdose in the UK. To address this, the Unlinked Anonymous Monitoring (UAM) Survey included questions on overdose and naloxone use in 2013. This report presents the data from 2013-2016 on self-reported non-fatal overdose among PWID.

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