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National Naloxone Programme Scotland: Monitoring Report 2017/18

Since the beginning of the National Naloxone Programme, the Scottish Government has commissioned Information Services Division (ISD) to report on THN kit distribution using monitoring data supplied by NHS Boards. This report presents information on the number of THN kits issued from 2011/12 to 2017/18. Data are presented separately for kits issued from community outlets, kits issued in prisons at the point of prisoner release and kits dispensed via community prescription. The number and percentage of opioid-related deaths that occurred within four or twelve weeks of prison release or hospital discharge are also presented.

Main Points

  • A total of 8,397 take-home naloxone kits were issued in Scotland in 2017/18, an increase of 3% from the previous year. A total of 46,037 take-home naloxone kits were supplied in Scotland between 2011/12 and 2017/18.
  • In 2017/18, 6,924 kits were issued from community outlets, 664 kits were issued in prisons upon release and 809 kits were dispensed via community prescription.
  • In 2017/18, 3,996 (53%) take-home naloxone kits distributed from community outlets and prisons were repeat supplies. Of these, 1,017 (25%) repeat supplies were made because the previous kit was reported as having been used to treat an opioid overdose.
  • In 2017/18, it is estimated that 2,458 kits were issued as a first supply to an individual at risk of opioid overdose. Cumulatively, 23,096 ‘at risk’ individuals are estimated to have been supplied with take-home naloxone between 2011/12 and 2017/18.
  • At the end of 2017/18, the ‘reach’ of take-home naloxone (based on the number of ‘at risk’ individuals supplied with kits between 2011/12 and 2017/18) was estimated to be 376 kits per 1,000 problem drug users.
  • In 2017, 4.4% (31) of people whose death was opioid-related had been released from prison in the previous four weeks. This was significantly lower than the 9.8% observed in the five years before implementation of the National Naloxone Programme (2006-10). These figures should be treated with caution due to the small number of opioid-related deaths within four weeks of prison release.
  • In 2017, 11.0% (78) of people whose death was opioid-related had been discharged from hospital in the previous four weeks. This was not significantly different to the percentage observed in the five years before implementation of the National Naloxone Programme (2006-10: 9.7%).

Read Report National Naloxone Programme

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