Health and Social Care Committee

Drugs policy inquiry

Inquiry status: open

Inquiry launched on Monday 4 February 2019. The closing date for written submissions was Monday 18 March 2019.

Scope of the inquiry

Terms of Reference

The Committee is seeking written submissions on the health consequences of illicit drugs policy including on:

Health and harms:  

  • What is the extent of health harms resulting from drug use? 

Prevention and early intervention:  

  • What are the reasons for both the initial and the continued, sustained use of drugs? This refers to the wide spectrum of use, from high-risk use to the normalisation of recreational use. 
  • How effective and evidence-based are strategies for prevention and early intervention in managing and countering the drivers of use? This includes whether a whole-system approach is taken. 

Treatment and harm reduction:  

  • How effective and evidence-based is treatment provision? This refers to both healthcare services and wider agencies, and the extent to which joined-up care pathways operate. 
  • Is policy is sufficiently geared towards treatment? This includes the extent to which health is prioritised, in the context of the Government’s criminal justice-led approach. 

Best practice: 

  • What would a high-quality, evidence-based response to drugs look like? 
  • What responses to drugs internationally stand out as particularly innovative and / or relevant, and what evidence is there of impact in these cases? 
Terms of reference:

Latest evidence

  • 07 May 2019 - Drugs policy - oral evidence | PDF version (PDF353 KB) HC 1822 | Published 17 May 2019

    Evidence given by Mark Johnson, Chief Executive Officer, User Voice, Professor Susanne MacGregor, Honorary Professor of Social Policy, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Professor Tim Millar, Professor of Substance Use and Addictions, University of ManchesterKaren Biggs, Chair, Collective Voice, Boris Pomroy, Chief Executive, Mentor, Professor Harry Sumnall, Professor in Substance Use, Liverpool John Moores University, Mike Flanagan, Consultant Nurse and Clinical Lead, Drug and Alcohol Services, Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation TrustKirstie Douse, Head of Legal Services, Release, Adrian Crossley, Head of Addiction, Centre for Social Justice

    Watch this evidence session

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