Hungary Country Drug Report 2019

Drug-induced deaths

Drug-induced deaths are deaths that can be attributed directly to the use of illicit drugs (i.e. poisonings and overdoses).

In Hungary the annual number drug-induced deaths ranged between 20 and 33 in the period 2012-17. The fluctuation in the number of deaths reported before 2011 was attributed to the purity of heroin. Availability of heroin fell significantly after 2010 and, as a result, other opioids started to dominate drug-related deaths data. In 2017, according to toxicological results, opioids were involved in almost a third of all deaths and were always found in combination with other psychoactive substances. In the remaining cases, amphetamines, MDMA/ecstasy, synthetic cathinones, cocaine or synthetic cannabinoids were detected. In 2017, the majority of victims were male and the average age at the time of death was 31 years.

The drug-induced mortality rate among adults (aged 15-64 years) in Hungary was five deaths per million in 2017, which is below the most recent European average of 22 deaths per million.

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Methodological note: Analysis of trends is based only on those countries providing sufficient data to describe changes over the period specified. The reader should also be aware that monitoring patterns and trends in a hidden and stigmatised behaviour like drug use is both practically and methodologically challenging. For this reason, multiple sources of data are used for the purposes of analysis in this report. Caution is therefore required in interpretation, in particular when countries are compared on any single measure. Detailed information on methodology and caveats and comments on the limitations in the information set available can be found in the EMCDDA Statistical Bulletin.