The EMCDDA releases today the third in a series of rapid ‘trendspotter’ studies exploring the impact of COVID-19 on the drug situation and responses to it. Revisiting and reviewing findings from two studies in 2020 on the effects of the pandemic on drug use and services, the report identifies new trends and developments which may have implications for policy and practice.
The report explores the situation in the EU Member States from June 2020 to February 2021, particularly changes in drug markets, patterns of use, harms and drug services, both in the community and in prisons.
The EMCDDA’s trendspotter methodology examines emerging drug-related trends by rapidly collecting and triangulating data from a variety of sources to allow for timely assessments of topics of concern. Specifically, for this COVID-19 impact study, the methodology was adapted to suit online investigation, taking into account the national emergency restrictions on both the EMCDDA team and the study participants. The study was designed to be carried out in successive waves.
The new analysis draws on a range of sources, including: three online surveys, eight virtual facilitated groups, data and literature reviews.
To find out how these results fit into the broader picture of the drug situation in Europe, read our European Drug Report 2021 to be launched on 9 June. The report is based on data from 29 countries EU 27, Turkey and Norway.