This strategy is specifically about drugs. We also have an alcohol strategy that you can read.

How we work

Both the drugs and alcohol strategies are the responsibility of the South Gloucestershire Health and Wellbeing Board.

The two documents complement each other and, where appropriate, work towards the same outcomes. We will measure and record how and if we meet these outcomes in the same way for each strategy.

There are some joint objectives that will be developed together.


There are financial benefits to us investing in prevention. But we also have an ethical duty to stop people from developing a serious drug problem.

Drug dependency can cause poor physical and mental health. It can also be the start of many other difficulties that have a negative impact on the person taking drugs and those around them.

We must:

  • find ways to reduce the risks of drug-related harm in people who are already using them
  • understand why people may start misusing drugs
  • intervene and educate people as early as we can to prevent drug misuse


While the number of people we have dependent on drugs is small, they are our most vulnerable residents. We risk them dying prematurely from drug-related harm if they do not get the treatment they need.

We need to continue to invest in good quality, evidence-based treatment to help them to recover.

It is crucial that we also help people dependent on drugs with things like housing, money, and employment. They are essential to recovery.

Our drugs needs assessment

Our 2020 drugs needs assessment found that there is an increasing number of people becoming dependent on prescribed opioids.

We must offer drug services that can adapt to this and give specialist treatment to meet their needs.

Learning from the Covid-19 pandemic

This strategy and the needs assessment that it was developed from were written during the coronavirus pandemic.

We have tried to incorporate what we have learnt from the pandemic while also thinking about how this strategy can work for the next 5 years.

It considers the wider context of drug related harm and how we deal with that after the pandemic.

The full strategy

For more information you can download and read the full strategy document.

Read the full drugs strategy

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