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Home > Harm reduction advice for people who use drugs during Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

HSE (2020) Harm reduction advice for people who use drugs during Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Dublin: HSE

Image (PNG) (Harm reduction poster (DOH & HSE))
PDF (Covid-19 and drug overdose poster)

External website:

The current COVID19 pandemic raises serious concerns for people who use drugs.

As this is a new virus, we continue to learn about the impact it can have on people who use drugs. We know it is an extra risky time to use drugs and that drug use can lower a person’s immune system, making all drug using groups at greater risk of illness from the virus.

Drug market changes

  • International travel resitictions can impact on the chain of supply of drugs meaning there can be changes in the market
  • It is safer not to use drugs during this time. If people choose to, we ask that they are extra cautious and keep market changes in mind
  • You can't be sure of the contents during this time
  • Using alternatives to what you would normally use or using new types drugs can increase your risk of overdose.

Resources from

1. Download HSE poster 'Drug advice.Do's and Don'ts' HERE

2. Download HSE/Department of Health 'Harm reduction advice for people who use drugs during the delay phase' HERE

3. Read harm reduction information for club drug users via our article with Four Four Magazine (12/03/20)

4. Download 'Cannabid and You' for factual information about cannabis, withdrawl and how to reduce the harms HERE

5. Download Alcohol harm reduction from Alcohol Forum in English and Polish 

Overdose and COVID-19

Don't be afraid to get medical help by calling 999/112 if you or a friend become unwell or feel suicidal after using drugs.Using drugs alone can be dangerous due to the risk of overdose and lack of emergency help.

Breathing concerns associated with COVID-19 can increase the risk of overdose for people who use opioids.

Information about overdose and COVID-19 can be found on our site HERE.

Additional information

Download poster HERE

General harm reduction resources can be found here.

Get up to date advice and information on Coronavirus COVID 19 from the HSEThe HPSC and The Department of Health.

[There is a plain language guide to terms related to Covid-19 by NALA]

Item Type
Publication Type
Drug Type
All substances
Intervention Type
Harm reduction
5 May 2020
Corporate Creators
Place of Publication
Accession Number
HRB (Electronic Only)
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