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Emerging Drug Trends and Drug Checking Report 2021

On the 17th September 2021, the report of the ‘Emerging Drug Trends and Drug Checking Working Group’ has been published by the HSE National Social Inclusion Office. This report reviews drug use and health responses among people who use drugs in nightlife spaces.

The Working Group was established as part of the National Drug Strategy ‘Reducing Harm, Supporting Recovery: A health-led response to drug and alcohol use in Ireland’ in 2019 to review evidence in relation issues relating to the area of nightlife drug use, health and social responses and the provision of drug checking and monitoring services to reduce drug-related harms.

The report recognises that an emerging stimulant and poly drug culture among new user groups is currently a major issue of concern across Europe and here in Ireland.

The report will be launched at a webinar titled 'Emerging Drug Trends and Health Responses in Nightlife Settings – launch of the Report of the Emerging Drug Trends and Drug Checking Working Group 2021'.

Download the report

The Emerging Drug Trends and Drug Checking Working Group Report can be downloaded here. 

Supporting Research

The HSE and Trinity College Dublin collaborated to review drug use among a sample of festival attendees in Ireland. See:Drug use, harm-reduction practices and attitudes toward the utilisation of drug safety testing services in an Irish cohort of festival-goers


  1. Dr Eamon Keenan discusses the Working Group to 'TheCase.Report' podcast for Emergency Mangament Providers. Listen here (40 minutes into podcast)

  2. 'Experts want pilot project to test drugs at music festivals', The Irish Examiner, read here

  3. 'Purity and potency of MDMA and cocaine “at an all-time high” HSE report says': District Magazine. Read here. 

  4. 'Working Group recommends drug checking for music festivals', The Times UK. Read here

  5. 'New HSE report highlights emerging drug trends and harm reduction responses', the Limerick Post. Read here

  6. 'Experts recommend pilot programme to test drugs at music festivals', Mixmag. Read here 

  7. Festival drug testing pilot needs approval from Gardaí and Department of Justice, the Irish Examiner. Read here.

  8. A ‘health-led’ approach to drug use', The Irish Medical Times, Read here.

  9. 'Experts recommend pilot schemes to test drugs at festivals', NME. Read here.

  10. New report highlights emerging nightlife drug trends and harm reduction responses. Donegal Live. Read here.

  11. 'Drug-taking at festivals: how to reduce harm and protect health and wellbeing', Trinity School of Medicine. Read here.

  12. 'SAFER RAVING Health experts call for Ireland’s first-ever project to test illegal drugs at festivals', The Sunday World. Read here.

Webinar presentations 

Speakers presentations for the launch event can be downloaded here

National Drug Strategy 

Download 'Reducing Harm, Supporting Recovery: A health-led response to drug and alcohol use in Ireland 2017 - 2025'

Posted by on 09/14 at 05:01 PM in
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The HSE and Union of Students in Ireland (USI) ask students to think about drug safety measures when using club drugs
Harm reduction messages from the #SaferStudentNights campaign.
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