2. The impact of economic recessions on the harms of drug use and health responses, in Europe: a panel data analysis
In a framework whereas there has been marked volatility in the world economies, with GDP and registering dramatic declines recently, it is necessary to be prepared to deal with its impact on the drug-related use and its harms. This study aims to analyse the impact of economic cycles on the harms caused by the use of illegal drugs and; on the drug-related health and social responses, in the European Union.To analyse the relationship, authors will use standard panel data models, incorporating different types of non-linearities - allowing for different types of regime-dependent relationships between drug-related harms and income or unemployment. Lagged dependent variables are also incorporated to test for the possible existence of adaptive expectations.
Preliminary results show a statistically significant relationship between economic cycles and different types of drug-related harms, such as overdoses and high-risk drug use. The type and intensity of effects vary, depending on the economic variables used as threshold.
The study shows how drug-related harms in Europe vary with economic recessions and economic growth. Authors compare results with other non-European countries and analyse the role that different types of possible health and social responses may play to prevent and reduce the worst harms associated to certain types of drug use.
Disclosure of interest statement: The University of A Coruña was supported by EMCDDA to complete the first draft of this study. >