According to a new report from the health authority Sundhedsstyrelsen, 254 people in Denmark died last year as a result of a drug overdoses – a drop compared to the year before.
But the report also revealed that the average age of OD deaths fell from 41.7 years to 40.9 as a result of more young people dying from drug ingestion. One explanation is the very potent cocaine that can be found in Denmark at the moment.
“You have to assume that the rising number of poisonings and deaths related to cocaine are connected to the strong cocaine on the market right now. When drugs are potent, the risk of overdoses increases and it’s simply become a more dangerous drug,” said Kari Grasaasen, a spokesperson with Sundhedsstyrelsen.
Opioids main cause
The report (here in Danish) revealed that the purity of cocaine in Denmark at the moment was at about 60 percent, the highest level in 25 years. Compared to 2016, there was a 38 percent increase of cocaine ODs last year.
But most OD-related deaths in Denmark continue to be brought on by heroin and other opioids. Overall, though, the health authorities are pleased with the decline in deaths.
“It’s always positive when we see fewer drug-related deaths and we hope that the trend continues. But as long as the drugs are here, it’s difficult to completely avoid accidents and injuries,” said Grasaasen.