James Roy Robertson

GP and Academic

Social deprivation and other environmental influences in drug abuse

The environmental influence on drug taking is familiar to all drug users and to most policy makers. Understanding the relationship between social deprivation and other environmental influences such as housing and awareness and beliefs is however extremely complicated and less easy to understand. Environmental influences have effects on generating drug problems but also on the course of drug careers and the outcomes of treatment interventions. The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs produced a report called “Drug Misuse and the Environment” in 1998 and the talk will largely centre on the key areas the Committee identified and the outcome of their deliberations. It will concentrate on the environmental
influences generating and driving drug dependency and misuse and on the implications for treatment and health policy.