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Crack Cocaine Deaths

Volume 447: debated on Monday 12 June 2006

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many deaths resulted from the use of crack cocaine in each of the last five years, broken down by age. (75565)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician, who has been asked to reply.

Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated 12 June 2006:

As National Statistician, I have been asked to reply to your recent question asking how many deaths resulted from the use of crack cocaine in each of the last five years, broken down by age. (75565)

Available figures relate to deaths where the underlying cause was drug poisoning, not the total number where use of crack cocaine was a contributory factor. ONS routinely carries out special monitoring of deaths from drug-related poisoning and publishes a combined figure for deaths mentioning cocaine on the death certificate. It is not possible to provide separate figures on deaths related to crack cocaine and cocaine from routine mortality data, as it is not possible to separately identify crack cocaine from other forms of cocaine at post mortem and other evidence to distinguish the form of cocaine taken is rarely provided at death certification.

The most recent year for which figures are available is 2004. The following table shows the number of deaths where the underlying cause of death was drug-related poisoning and cocaine was mentioned on the death certificate in England and Wales for the calendar years 2000 to 2004.

Number of deaths from drug-related poisoning1 where cocaine was mentioned on group, England and Wales, 2000 to 20042

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

Under 20

2

4

4

2

3

20-29

27

38

55

48

53

30-39

34

28

63

44

64

40-49

15

15

14

14

22

50-69

2

11

3

4

5

70 and over

0

0

0

1

0

1 Cause of death was defined using the International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision (ICD-9) codes 292, 304, 305.2-305.9, E850-E858, E950.0-E950.5, E962.0 and E980.0-E980.5 for the year 2000, and the Tenth Revision (1CD-10) codes F11-F16, F18-F19, X40-X44, X60-X64, X85 and Y10-Y14from 2001 onwards.

2 Data are for deaths occurring in each calendar year.

Source:

Office for National Statistics