Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Title: Crystal methamphetamine's impact on frontline emergency services in Victoria, Australia
Contributor(s): Jones, Rikki  (author)orcid ; Usher, Kim  (author)orcid ; Woods, Cindy  (author)orcid 
Publication Date: 2019-12
Early Online Version: 2019-08-17
DOI: 10.1016/j.auec.2019.07.004
Handle Link:

Background: The use of crystal methamphetamine is a growing problem in Australia. Methamphetamine users can suffer adverse physical health effects, psychotic symptoms and methamphetamine-related aggressive behaviour. The increasing use and related harms of crystal methamphetamine is presenting serious problems for frontline emergency responders.

Methods: A population-based retrospective analysis was undertaken of data collected by Ambulance Victoria describing crystal methamphetamine related events attended by ambulance across Victoria over six financial years from 2011/12 to 2016/17.

Results: Methamphetamine-related events attended by Victoria Ambulance paramedics significantly increased from 2011/12 to 2016/17, particularly in regional Victoria. The most frequent age group requiring ambulance attendance is 25–39 years. The proportion of events requiring police coattendance significantly increased, as did transportation to emergency department/hospital.

Conclusion: The substantial increases in methamphetamine-related events attended by ambulance indicate the need for increased resources and support for paramedics, particularly in regional/rural areas. The large increase among young people aged 15–24 years indicates a need for policy action on prevention, harm reduction and expanded treatment services to reduce health problems and methamphetamine-related harms.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Australasian Emergency Care, 22(4), p. 201-205
Publisher: Elsevier Ltd
Place of Publication: United Kingdom
ISSN: 2588-994X
Fields of Research (FoR) 2020: 420699 Public health not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2020: 200413 Substance abuse
200499 Public health (excl. specific population health) not elsewhere classified
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
Appears in Collections:Journal Article
School of Health

Files in This Item:
1 files
File SizeFormat 
Show full item record


checked on Mar 23, 2024

Page view(s)

checked on Feb 11, 2024


checked on Feb 11, 2024
Google Media

Google ScholarTM



Items in Research UNE are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.