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Tobacco, alcohol and illicit drug use can place a heavy burden on individuals, families and society. The health, social and economic effects are diverse and substantial, and include disease and injury, mental health conditions, road accidents, family and domestic violence, and other crime.

This report presents key results from the 2019 National Drug Strategy household survey. It looks at people’s drug use throughout their lives and during the last 12 months, and examines how these patterns have changed over time. It also asks people for their opinions on a range of initiatives designed to reduce the harm caused by tobacco, alcohol and illicit drug use, and for the first time provides perspectives on emerging initiatives, such as the availability of pill and other drug testing for potential drug users.

Key findings:

  • fewer Australians are smoking tobacco daily, while the use of e-cigarettes is increasing
  • more Australians are giving up or reducing their alcohol intake, driven by health concerns 
  • rates of substance use are falling among younger generations (less likely to smoke, drink and use illicit drugs)
  • non-medical pharmaceutical use is down, driven by a fall in the use of pain-killers.
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Drug Statistics series no. 32