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World Drug Report 2019

November 5, 2019

35 Million people worldwide suffer from drug use disorders while only 1 in 7 people receive treatment. Improved research and more precise data have revealed that the health consequences of drug use are more severe and widespread than previously thought. These higher figures are partially a result new surveys conducted in India and Nigeria. Both countries are among the ten most populous countries in the world.


The Report estimates the number of opioid users to be 53 Million. This figure is up 56 percent from previous estimates. The Report also estimates that opioids are responsible for two-thirds of the 585,00 people who died as a result of drug use in 2017. According to surveys, 11 million people injected drugs in 2017. Of that 11 million people, 1.4 million live with HIV and 5.6 million with Hepatitis C.


In 2017, and estimated 271 million people, 5.5 percent of the global population aged 15-64, had used drugs in the previous year. A long-term view reveals that the number of people who use drugs in now 30 percent higher than it was 2009. Most of this is due to the higher prevalence of the use of opioids in Africa, Asia, Europe, and North America and the use cannabis in North America, South America and Asia.


Global cocaine manufacturing reached an all time high in 2017 of 1,976 tons. This is a 25 percent increase from 2016. The amount of cocaine seized rose 13 percent to 1,275 tons. The largest amount ever reported for one year.


North America's Synthetic Opioid crisis also saw increases. More than 47,000 opioid overdose deaths were recorded in the United States. That is an increase of 13 percent from 2016. Likewise in  Canada, there were 4,000 opioid-related deaths in 2017. That is an increase of 33 percent from 2016. Fentanyl remains the key problem of the synthetic opioid crisis in North America.



SOURCE: United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC)

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