Over the past few weeks, we've been trying to understand what impact the Covid-19 lockdown has had on people who use drugs.
During Alert Level 4, we surveyed over 120 services and people who were using drugs, and the results are in: We know that although some people may be using more alcohol or other drugs during lockdown, others are using the time to take a break.
We are working with the addiction treatment sector to identify changes as early as possible, so that we can prevent or reduce drug harm. We found:
Youth services reported some differences. They mentioned supporting their clients with withdrawal more often than adult services. Many young people had higher parental supervision and lower access to substances during Alert Level 4. For some, this caused tension in their household.
As we transition down alert levels, we are recommending that people who have taken a break or reduced their use be cautious about starting to use again. Their tolerance to a drug is likely to have decreased, meaning that it is not a good idea to use the same amount as before. In addition, there is no quality control in an illegal market, and drugs may have been made in a new way, include other substances, or vary in strength.
If you know someone who might need a bit of extra information or support, check out our advice and helpful tips on how to be safer, manage withdrawal, stay in recovery, and support others.
You can download the full reports here:
18 January 2023
Drug checking services at Rhythm and Vines found potent psychedelic and stimulant, 25B-NBOH, sold as tabs of LSD.
05 November 2022
New data shows fatal overdoses have increased by 54% in the last five years
05 November 2022
The NZ Drug Foundation says a 54% increase in drug overdose deaths between 2017 and 2021 is deeply concerning and must prompt swift action o...
17 December 2020
Spikes in synthetic cannabinoids harm can happen at any time, and we continue to see incidents that leave in their wake a trail of casualtie...
Back to top