UK report proposes a new harms index to rate dangers of drugs and alcoholBMJ 2007; 334 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.39147.339560.DB (Published 08 March 2007) Cite this as: BMJ 2007;334:494
- Susan Mayor
Use of illegal drugs should be managed primarily as a social issue rather than as a criminal offence, with a new legislative framework setting drugs in the wider context of substance abuse, recommends a UK report published this week.⇓
The main aim of public policy should be to reduce the harm that drugs cause, the report recommended. To achieve this, the concept of drugs should be extended to include alcohol, tobacco, solvents, and over the counter and prescription drugs that can be misused. The report argues that all psychoactive substances—not just illegal drugs—can, and do, cause harm.
The report was developed by the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce's Commission on Illegal Drugs, Communities and Public Policy, an independent multidisciplinary body. After …