Society For The Study Of Addiction

COVID-19: research / briefings / evidence (links)

For a thorough summary of addiction-related COVID-19 studies from 2020, see the Addiction Journal Bibliography compilations .

Research / Briefings / Evidence A-Z


Action on Smoking and Health and Cancer Research UK: Stepping up: The response of stop smoking services in England to the COVID-19 pandemic: Jan 2021 Report

Addiction Journal: Alcohol consumption during the COVID-19 pandemic in Europe: a large-scale cross-sectional study in 21 countries

Addiction Journal: For better or for worse? A pre–post exploration of the impact of the COVID-19 lockdown on cannabis users

Addictive Behaviors: The impact of the initial Covid-19 lockdown upon regular sports bettors in Britain: Findings from a cross-sectional online study

Alcoholism Clinical and Experimental Research: Changes in Alcohol Use and Drinking Context due to the COVID‐19 Pandemic: A Multimethod Study of College Student Drinkers

Annals of Internal Medicine: Retail Alcohol and Tobacco Sales during COVID-19: click here

Annals of the American Thoracic Society: Smoking and COVID-19: The Real Deal – paper addresses research needed to understand smoking and COVID-19

Australian Drug Foundation listing of COVID-19 research projects

BMJ Covid 19: How harm reduction advocates and the tobacco industry capitalised on the pandemic to promote nicotine: Feature Research Integrity

British Journal of Health Psychology: Health behaviour change during the UK COVID‐19 lockdown: Findings from the first wave of the C‐19 health behaviour and well‐being daily tracker study

British Journal of Nursing: Smoking and tobacco: working towards the endgame as a vital part of post-COVID-19 recovery

Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction and the Centre of Excellence for Women’s Health have released three products: Linking Practices on Intimate Partner Violence and Substance Use during COVID-19; Action on Women’s Experience of Intimate Partner Violence and Substance Use in the COVID-19 Context; COVID-19, Intimate Partner Violence and Substance Use; click here

Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction and the Mental Health Commission of Canada survey on long-term impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Canadians’ mental health and substance use: results

Canadian Centre Substance Use and Addiction: Maintaining a Public Health Approach to Alcohol Policy During COVID-19 [Policy Brief]

Canadian Institutes for Health Information: Unintended consequences of COVID-19: Impact on harms caused by substance use: report

Centers for Disease Control (US) COVID-19 Questions and Answers: For People Who Use Drugs or Have Substance Use Disorder Updated Mar. 29, 2021: includes Q&A for medical professionals.

Centers for Disease Control (US) Science Brief: Evidence used to update the list of underlying medical conditions that increase a person’s risk of severe illness from COVID-19 – Substance use disorders added to CDC list of health conditions that raise COVID risks

Central Statistics Office Ireland (2020): Social impact of COVID-19 survey November 2020 well-being and lifestyle under level 5 restrictions

DARU Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences: Surging trends in prescriptions and costs of antidepressants in England amid COVID-19: click here

Drug and Alcohol Dependence: Drug seizures plummeted early in the COVID-19 pandemic, then climbed once lockdowns lifted: click here

Drug and Alcohol Dependence: Factors associated with drinking behaviour during COVID-19 social distancing and lockdown among adults in the UK

Drug and Alcohol Review Special Collection Covid-19 Research

Drug and Alcohol Review: Characterising the patterns of and factors associated with increased alcohol consumption since COVID‐19 in a UK sample: click here

EMCDDA: European Drug Report 2021: Trends and Developments – includes a section on How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected drug use and supply’

EMCDDA: Impact of COVID-19 on drug markets, use, harms and drug services in the community and prisons-report

EMCDDA Trendspotter: Impact of COVID-19 on drug use and drug services in Western Balkans

European Addiction Research Editorial ‘The Double Effect of COVID-19 Confinement Measures and Economic Recession on High-Risk Drug Users and Drug Services’

Fare News : Australia records highest month in history for alcohol retailer turnover in December

Frontiers in Psychiatry: Exercise and Use of Enhancement Drugs at the Time of the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Multicultural Study on Coping Strategies During Self-Isolation and Related Risks click here

International Journal of Drug Policy COVID-19 and people who use drugs; Seizing opportunity in times of chaos (in press)

JAMA Network Open Research Letter: Substance Use and Addiction – Drug Overdose Deaths Before and After Shelter-in-Place Orders during the COVID-19 Pandemic in San Francisco

JAMA Network Open: Trends in Drug Overdose Mortality in Ohio during the First 7 Months of the COVID-19 Pandemic: research letter

JAMA Network Open: Prescribing of Opioid Analgesics and Buprenorphine for Opioid Use Disorder during the COVID-19 Pandemic

JAMA Pediatrics: Adolescents’ Substance Use and Physical Activity Before and During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Journal of Addictive Diseases: Exploring the public’s perception of gambling addiction on Twitter during the COVID-19 pandemic: Topic modelling and sentiment analysis

Journal of Gambling Studies: Gambling by Young Adults in the UK During COVID-19 Lockdown: paper

Journal of Primary Care & Community Health: Electronic Cigarette Use Is Not Associated with COVID-19 Diagnosis

Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs: Managing COVID-19 Transmission Risks in Bars: An Interview and Observation Study: click here

medRxiv, Kalkhoran, S., Levy, D., Rigotti, N. (2021). Smoking and Vaping among a National Sample of U.S. Adults during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Pre-print paper

Mental Elf: Increased alcohol consumption during the pandemic: explained

Ministry of Health Luxembourg: Mini-European Web Survey on Drugs (EWSD) – impact of COVID-19 on drug use, acquisition behaviour and the drug market in Luxembourg

Neurosight: Student Drug Behaviour and Mental Health during COVID-19- Survey findings

NIDA: People with SUDs Have Increased Risk for COVID-19 and Worse Outcomes

Nicotine and Tobacco Research: The Potential Effectiveness of COVID-Related Smoking Cessation Messages in Three Countries

OECD: Preventing Harmful Alcohol Use includes data on alcohol use during pandemic

Psychiatry Research Short communication: Changes in body dysmorphic disorder, eating disorder, and exercise addiction symptomology during the COVID-19 pandemic: A longitudinal study of 319 health club users

Public Health: Preliminary indications of the burden of COVID-19 among people who inject drugs in England and Northern Ireland and the impact on access to health and harm reduction services: click here

Public Health Scotland: Studies of alcohol sales and consumption in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic findings from 2 studies plus a briefing paper : click here

Qeios: The association of smoking status with SARS‐CoV‐2 infection, hospitalisation and mortality from COVID‐19: A living rapid evidence review with Bayesian meta‐analyses (version 10)

Release: Drugs in the Time of COVID: Interim Report. Plus a summary of the report’s findings from Russell Webster here

SHAAP: Understanding drinking transitions during lockdown – event report

The Lancet Gastroenterology & Hepatology: Alcohol-related harm during the COVID-19 pandemic: editorial

Tobacco Control (BMJ): Impact of COVID-19 lockdown on smoking consumption in a large representative sample of Italian adults

Tobacco Control (BMJ) Brief Report: Vape shop and consumer activity during COVID-19 non-essential business closures in the USA

University of Connecticut: Impact of COVID-19 on Racial-Ethnic Minorities among Persons with Opioid Use Disorder: research findings

UNSW (University of New South Wales) National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre Drug Trends program has released new reports that show a decline in the availability of methamphetamine and heroin during COVID-19 restrictions

University of Saskatchewan: study has found that the COVID-19 pandemic has led to significant worsening of already poor dietary habits, low activity levels, sedentary behaviour, and high alcohol consumption among university students.


Addiction Journal: Shifts in alcohol consumption during the COVID‐19 pandemic: early indications from Australia

Addiction Journal: COVID‐19, smoking, vaping and quitting: a representative population survey in England

ADFAM: Families in Lockdown: The effects of the COVID-19 lockdown on the family and friends of someone with an alcohol, drug or gambling problem survey report

Alcohol and Alcoholism, Alcohol and COVID-19 editorial

Alcohol & Drug Foundation, Australia -‘ Changing your drinking habits’ find out about the six signs that home isolation could be impacting your drinking: click here

ASH Scotland Covid-19 and smoking research –a list of published articles on scientific research which includes information or data on smoking, nicotine and Covid-19.

Australian National University report ‘Alcohol consumption during the COVID-19 period’ shows Australians are drinking alcohol more frequently during the COVID-19 pandemic than before

British Columbia Centre on Substance Use (Canada) COVID-19 resources: click here

BMJ Global Health: YouTube as a source of information on COVID-19: a pandemic of misinformation?

BMJ Tobacco Control: COVID-19 and smoking: resources, research and news updated 9 Sept: click here

BMJ Tobacco Control: resources, research and news about COVID-19 and smoking, vaping and other tobacco products: click here

BJGP Open is rapidly publishing research and editorials on COVID-19, and will be collecting all articles here

Brief Addiction Science Information Source (BASIS) ASHES Review Perceived risk, quit intentions, and quit attempts among cigar users during the COVID-19 pandemic

Brief Addiction Science Information Source (BASIS) The WAGER, Vol. 25(8):– Gambling in the time of COVID-19: Mental health, substance use, and financial distress among high-risk online gamblers

Bristol Drugs Project: Researching During A Pandemic -working with the Universities of Bristol and Bath to find out how the Coronavirus pandemic has affected the lives of people who inject drugs in Bristol.

Bristol Drugs Project COVID-19 Impact Report

Campaign for Social Science: Dr Hannah Carver and Dr Tessa Parkes, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Stirling on how social science inspires researchers to create much needed system and service change for people who are homeless with substance use problems

Canadian Centre on Drug Use and Addiction: Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on People Who Use Substances: What we have heard

Canadian Centre on Drug Use and Addiction (CCSA – in French & English): open versus closed: the risks associated with retail liquor stores during COVID-19: click here

Canadian Centre on Drug Use and Addiction (CCSA) report: COVID-19 and cannabis smoking and vaping: four things you should know: click here

Canadian Centre on Drug Use and Addiction (CCSA): changes related to COVID-19 in the illegal drug supply and access to services, and resulting health harms (CCENDU Alert)

Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction (CCSA): Boredom and Stress Drives Increased Alcohol Consumption during COVID-19: NANOS Poll Summary Report

Canadian Institute for Substance Use Research (CISUR) University of Victoria: Liquor and lockdown: Alcohol consumption in BC increases during COVID-19

Center de recherche du Center hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal (CRCHUM) Q&A: COVID-19 is worse for drug users

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (Canada): COVID-19 pandemic adversely affecting mental health of women and people with children: Survey findings

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report :Mental Health, Substance Use, and Suicidal Ideation During the COVID-19 Pandemic — United States MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2020;69:1049–1057.

Cochrane Clinical Answers related to COVID-19 including CCAs (free) on effective options for quitting smoking during the pandemic: click here

Drink Wise Age Well: Addressing the needs of older adults receiving alcohol treatment during the Covid-19 pandemic: A qualitative study

Drug and Alcohol Dependence: COVID-19 survey among people who use drugs in three cities in Norway: short communication

Drug and Alcohol Research Connections – May 2020 – latest news from NDARC, NDRI and NCETA, with a special COVID-19 focus in this issue7

Drug and Alcohol Review: The impact of nationwide alcohol ban during the COVID‐19 lockdown on alcohol use‐related internet searches and behaviour in India: An infodemiology study

DrugNet Ireland: Health Research Board Evidence brief on the response of drug services to Covid-19

Drugs and Me –Preliminary Survey Results how has drug use changed during the pandemic

EMCDDA: Impact of COVID-19 on drug markets, drug use, drug-related harms and responses in south European Neighbourhood Policy countries report

EMCDDA: New psychoactive substances: global markets, glocal threats and the COVID-19 pandemic. An update from the EU Early Warning System

EMCDDA report: Impact of COVID-19 on drug markets, drug use, drug-related harms and responses in east European Neighbourhood Policy countries

EMCDDA trendspotter briefing: Impact of COVID-19 on drug markets, drug use, drug-related harms and responses in east European Neighbourhood Policy countries

EMCDDA special report: COVID-19 and drugs – drug supply via darknet markets: click here

EMCDDA COVID-19: New study highlights decline in stimulant drug use but some rises in the use of cannabis, alcohol and prescription medicines to combat anxiety and depression

EMCDDA Trendspotter briefing: impact of COVID-19 on patterns of drug use and drug-related harms in Europe

Faces and Voices of Recovery: UK Peer Led Covid 19 Impact Survey – findings

Fare Australia: family violence and alcohol during COVID-19

Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE) survey shows that 20% of Australians purchased more alcohol and 70% of them are drinking more alcohol than normal, with one third now using alcohol daily during the COVID-19 pandemic: click here

Frontiers in Psychiatry: Exercise and Use of Enhancement Drug at the Time of COVID-19 Pandemic: A Multicultural Study on Coping Strategies During Self-Isolation and Related Risk

Frontiers in Psychiatry: Research Topic ‘Drug and Behavioral Addictions During Social-Distancing for the COVID-19 Pandemic’ series of eight papers.

Future of Personal Health: The Implications for Individuals with Substance Use Disorders during COVID-19 by Nora Volkow, Director of NIDA click here

GambleAware Report: The impact of the COVID-19 lockdown on gambling behaviour, harms and demand for treatment and support

Gambling Commission : Gambling business data updated during COVID-19

Gambling Research Exchange Ontario: COVID-19 News and Emerging Research: resources

Global Drug Survey COVID-19 Special Edition: Key Findings Report

Global Initiative against Transnational Organized Crime: When the Smoke Clears: The ban on tobacco products in South Africa during COVID-19

HRB Drugs Library Bulletin Dublin: The effects of COVID-19 on people experiencing mental ill-health, substance use disorder and homelessness or housing Insecurity in the Dublin region: a qualitative exploration

Health Research Board Library newsletter containing Irish and international resources on COVID-19: click here

House of Commons Nitrous Oxide: Coronavirus Parliamentary Question asking the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment has been made of the change in the level of the use of nitrous oxide during the covid-19 outbreak.

Imperial College London: a report on the global impact of COVID-19: click here

INPUD COVID-19 Survey Report 1: Health & Rights of People who Use Drugs in a COVID-19 Environment

International Journal of Drug Policy: Why we should all be more careful in drawing conclusions about how COVID-19 is changing drug markets

International Journal of Drug Policy Special Issue: COVID-19 and the health of people who use drugs: What is and what could be?

Institute of Alcohol Studies: Alcohol consumption during the COVID19 lockdown: summary of emerging evidence from the UK

Institute of Alcohol Studies: Alcohol harms: a hidden pandemic in the age of COVID-19? 2nd briefing on alcohol consumption

Irish Journal Psychological Medicine: Addiction Psychiatry and COVID-19 – Impact on patients and service provision

JAMA Changes in Adult Alcohol Use and Consequences during the COVID-19 Pandemic in the US Research Letter

JAMA Network : Analysis finds gaps in care in treating opioid use disorders during pandemic shutdowns Research Letter

JAMA Psychiatry: Overdose-Related Cardiac Arrests Observed by Emergency Medical Services during the US COVID-19 Epidemic: Research letter

JAMA Psychiatry Telehealth for Substance-Using Populations in the Age of Coronavirus Disease 2019 Recommendations to Enhance AdoptionViewpoint

Journal of Addictive Diseases: The COVID-19 cannabis health study: Results from an epidemiologic assessment of adults who use cannabis for medicinal reasons in the United States

Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health Mental health and health behaviours before and during the initial phase of the COVID-19 lockdown: longitudinal analyses of the UK Household Longitudinal Study

Journal of Public Health: Clinical impact of COVID-19 on people with substance use disorders

Journal of Public Health -Threatening increase in alcohol consumption in physicians quarantined due to coronavirus outbreak in Poland: the ALCOVID survey

Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs: Changes in Alcohol Consumption Among College Students Due to COVID-19: Effects of Campus Closure and Residential Change

La Trobe University: A timeline of alcohol-relevant restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic

London School of Economics: Illicit Drugs during Covid-19 -how has COVID-19 affected some of the most vulnerable people in society? | LSE Research

London School of Economics: Ireland’s innovative approach to supporting homeless and drug using populations during COVID-19 saved lives

NIDA Substance use disorders linked to COVID-19 susceptibility

NIDA Directors Blog ‘New Evidence on Substance Use Disorders and COVID-19 Susceptibility’

NIHR Applied Research Collaboration West: Understanding the experiences of people who inject drugs during the COVID-19 pandemic – findings from the LUCID-B study

National Association for Children of Alcoholics report: ‘Covid So Far, Lockdown and the Lost Children’ reports rise in calls from children whose parents have started to drink again in lockdown

National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, UNSW Australia, research response to COVID-19: click here

National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre: Impacts of COVID-19 and associated restrictions on people who use illicit stimulants in Australia: Preliminary findings from the Ecstasy and Related Drugs Reporting System 2020

National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre Key findings from the ‘Australians’ Drug Use: Adapting to Pandemic Threats’ (ADAPT) Study

National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre: Key findings from the ‘Australians’ Drug Use: Adapting to Pandemic Threats’ (ADAPT) Study Wave 2

National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre: Have COVID-19 restrictions affected needle and syringe program transactions in Tasmania

Observatoire Français des Drogues et des Toxicomanies English summary of the 2nd OFDT-TREND bulletin examining changes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown measures in France to practices of drug users, drug services and drug trafficking

Pharmaceuticals Journal: Substance use disorder in the COVID-19 pandemic Systematic review of vulnerabilities and complications

Population Health Management: The Opioid Epidemic within the COVID-19 Pandemic: Drug Testing in 2020

Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry: Addictions in the COVID-19 era: Current evidence, future perspectives a comprehensive review (in press)

Public Health England (PHE): emerging evidence from China shows smokers with COVID-19 are 14 times more likely to develop severe respiratory disease: click here

PHE COVID-19: impact on STIs, HIV and viral hepatitis: PHE report assessing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on prevention, testing, diagnosis and care for STIs, HIV and hepatitis in England

PHE: Wider Impacts of COVID-19 on Health (WICH) monitoring tool: PHE health intelligence teams are scoping metrics that will enable the monitoring of the indirect health impacts of COVID-19. Includes alcohol consumption, smoking and updated with behavioural Risk Factors – smoking quit attempts and methods to support quitting, from the Smoking Toolkit Study.

PHE Wider Impacts of COVID on Health (WICH) tool now includes data on gambling behaviour pre&post lockdown.

Qeios: ‘Smoking, vaping and hospitalization for COVID-19’: click here

Release: Impact of Coronavirus on Drug Purchases Survey

Release: COVID-19 & the impact on the drugs market – a network of people across the UK to provide information on what is going on in the drugs market in light of the Coronavirus.

Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health: How has the pandemic influenced substance use among young people? Insight

Royal College of Psychiatrists: Addiction services not equipped to treat the 8 million people drinking at high risk during pandemic –press release

Russell Webster: Impact of coronavirus on drug use across Europe summary of the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction trendspotter study on the impact of Covid-19 on drug consumption patterns and drug-related harms

St George’s University of London: Smoking and obesity identified to have causal link with susceptibility to severe COVID-19 and sepsis

The American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse: Longer time spent at home during COVID-19 pandemic is associated with binge drinking among US adults

The Conversation Australia : Pot, pills and the pandemic: how coronavirus is changing the way we use drugs

The Global Drug Survey (GDS) Special Edition report on COVID-19 highlights preliminary findings halfway through data collection. A complete report based on all data collected until June 20, 2020 follows in July | GDS, UK

The Lancet has created a COVID-19 resource centre. This resource brings together content from across The Lancet journals as it is published and is free to access: click here

The Lancet Gastroenterology & Hepatology -Effect of COVID-19 lockdown on alcohol consumption in patients with pre-existing alcohol use disorder

The Lancet Psychiatry: public health messaging and harm reduction in the time of COVID-19: click here

The Lancet Psychiatry: innovative strategies to support physical distancing among individuals with active addiction

The Lancet Respiratory Medicine: Tobacco smoking and COVID-19 infection

The Ontario Drug Policy Research Network: Preliminary patterns in circumstances surrounding opioid-related deaths in Ontario during the COVID-19 pandemic

Toxicology Reports: Nicotine and SARS-CoV-2: COVID-19 may be a disease of the nicotinic cholinergic system. Editorial

UK parliament: call for experts from the Knowledge Exchange Unit: click here

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI): COVID-19, the science explained. This website will be regularly updated with the latest science information behind the COVID-19 outbreak: click here

UNODC Research Brief: COVID-19 and the drug supply chain: from production and trafficking to use

UNODC Research Brief COVID-19-related Trafficking of Medical Products as a Threat to Public Health

University College Cork researchers on ‘Why drug dealing and drug use will increase after Covid-19’

University College London study into the psychological and social effects of COVID-19: click here

University of Bristol & University of Bath: Treatment for drug addiction – how do patients cope in lockdown? press release

University of Cambridge Research News: One in three adults drank more alcohol during first lockdown

University of Glasgow MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit: Alcohol use increased during lockdown, but smoking declined – sharing evidence

University of Oxford researchers studying the effect of smoking, nicotine and vaping on COVID-19 severity inking primary and clinical data for the assessment of associations between smoking status and the severity of coronavirus disease

University of Monash: COVID-19: Pandemic alcohol use and mental health problems-findings

University New South Wales: Illicit drugs are harder to get and cost more since the coronavirus pandemic, says UNSW Sydney’s National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre.

University of Stirling: The impacts of COVID-19 on people who use drugs in Scotland: website

University of Queensland Research: COVID-19 cocktails: push for tighter alcohol advertising restrictions on social media

World Health Organisation (WHO) COVID-19 database – the latest scientific findings and knowledge on COVID-19. The global literature cited in the database is updated daily: click here

WHO and EMRO Q&A on tobacco, waterpipe and e-cigarette use in the context of COVID-19 (English and Arabic): click here

WHO Scientific Brief Smoking and COVID-19 click here

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