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LGA responds to drug misuse death stats

Chairman of the Local Government Association's Community Wellbeing Board, Cllr Izzi Seccombe, responds to latest figures from the Office for National Statistics on the number of drug-related deaths in 2015.

"The continuing rise in drug-related deaths is a major concern to councils and our health partners. The biggest challenge we all face is an ageing cohort of drug users, who have not previously sought or had any treatment. As a result, they are prone to an accumulation of chronic physical and mental health conditions that make them more susceptible to dying through overdose.

"Councils are committed to ensuring drug users get the right support and treatment, and spend more on drug and alcohol treatment than in any other area of public health. This year alone, local authorities will plough £760 million into tackling substance misuse.

"However, with public health grants for local authorities being cut by 9 per cent over the next four years, including an in-year cut of £200 million in 2015/16, no service is immune from spending reductions, which could seriously undermine our efforts to prevent all kinds of major health conditions."

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