Department of Health written question – answered on 21st December 2017.

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Photo of Lord Patel of Bradford Lord Patel of Bradford Labour

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the increasing misuse of fentanyl; and whether they intend to introduce evidence-based key performance indicators for harm reduction initiatives in order to prioritise and support those initiatives.

Photo of Lord O'Shaughnessy Lord O'Shaughnessy The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health

Substance misuse is lower than it was a decade ago but we must always be alive to emerging threats and the reports linking fentanyl to a number of fatal drug overdoses are extremely concerning. That is why the Home Secretary has asked the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs to investigate the risks around fentanyl analogues, so that we can maximise the effectiveness of our response.

The Government’s updated Drug Strategy will capture the impact of wider health and social care costs and harms associated with drug misuse, including: hospital admissions related to drug misuse; rates of blood borne viruses and numbers of drug-related deaths, including on release from prison.

Public Health England supports local areas in responding to the threat from fentanyl, and other potent opiates.

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