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Opiate-related deaths in Dublin.


Mary Ward, Joseph Barry

Type: Report
Region: Republic of Ireland
Northern Ireland

In Ireland Intravenous drug misuse, principally heroin, occurs primarily in the Greater Dublin area. Methadone maintenance treatment has been an important part of the response to opiate misuse in Dublin since 1992. The aims of this study were to determine the number of opiate-related deaths in Dublin city and county during 1999, to establish the number of methadone-related deaths and to determine the proportion of these deaths associated with methadone prescribed according to guidelines. A retrospective review of all coroners' inquest files in Dublin city and county during 1999 was undertaken. A total of 84 opioid-related deaths were recorded. Seventy eight ( 92.9%) of opioid related deaths were male. Seventy three (86.9%) had two or more drugs identified toxicologically. There were 45 methadone related deaths, of which 15 (33.3%) were receiving methadone prescribed according to guidelines. It is concluded that opiate-related deaths occur primarily in males in the 25-34 year age group and are associated with a high level of polydrug use. Diverted methadone accounted for the majority of deaths involving methadone.



Rights: Public
Suggested citation:

Mary Ward, Joseph Barry. (2001) Opiate-related deaths in Dublin. [Online]. Available from: [Accessed: 21st August 2019].


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