IDRS Bulletin April 2010: Indications of changing trends in heroin and other opioid use in IDRS data nationally and in Western Australia

Key findings

  • This bulletin considers recent changing trends in heroin and other opioid use across Australian jurisdictions.
  • It suggests that evidence from the IDRS is consistent with a possible cyclical shift from uppers (stimulants) to downers (depressants) may be reoccurring, although the pattern may be different in different Australian jurisdictions.
  • Western Australian IDRS findings are used as a case study to demonstrate recent shifts in heroin use amongst IDU.
  • The bulletin concludes by summarising the measures taken in Western Australia in response to recent trends in the event that heroin availability, use and harm increase further.