By the Public Health Association of Australia

Key message:

  1. Taking illicit drugs, especially ecstasy, is becoming more common among young people in Australia.
  2. 70% of pills taken by young people in a 12 month period were taken at clubs, festivals and dance parties.
  3. The growth in new psychoactive substances and evolving chemical composition of illicit drugs means users have no way of knowing what they are taking and the potential risks involved.
  4. Testing of pills by appropriately trained health professionals can inform users about the content and thereby minimise the risk of injury or death.
  5. Evidence from several European countries indicates pill testing may reduce use, and health-related harms including deaths.