Cannabis plant image

Prevention is Better than Cure


Drug deaths in the UK in 2020
Drug poisoning deaths in England and Wales (2020)
Drug related deaths in Northern Ireland (2020)
Drug related deaths in Scotland (2020)


Drugs have a deadly effect
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The Children’s Society estimate there are 46,000 young people involved in County Lines, with some as young as 7 years old. This is the first steppingstone for being groomed into gangs, which is very hard to escape, and eventually they too will become drug dealers or addicts.

With this in mind, we have created two versions of our card, called THE REAL FACE OF DRUGS.

The first kind contains only facial images of 8 females and 8 males. Each face has before and after images, with some only a couple of years apart, and show the devastating effect drugs can have on your facial features, with some being unrecognisable. This card is mainly being used in primary schools.

The second design is aimed at audiences of secondary schools, colleges and universities. Although this card has similarity to the first card, with before and after images of some drug users, on the reverse we have added a design, called DISPELLING THE MYTHS.

This side of the card is designed to advise young people not to bow to peer pressure or friends when they tell you what you will experience when taking drugs. It shows the untruths about drug taking but highlights what could happen and the dangerous consequences that are always random.


In 2020/21 there were 4,859 deaths due to drug misuse involving illegal drugs in England and Wales, the highest ever recorded, and 1,330 deaths in Scotland.  The latest figures from Northern Ireland recorded 218 deaths.

The North East of England still has the highest drug misuse mortality in England 2020/21 for the EIGHTHY year running?

Scotland’s mortalities increases year on year and is the highest rate in Europe. 

The Scottish Government spent over £22.5 million on costs and fees for the heroine substitute, methadone programme, for an estimated 24,721 methadone patients, yet methadone contributed to 44% of drug related deaths in Scotland.

It is estimated that over 3 million people have taken illicit drugs in England & Wales and Scotland has an estimated 57,500 problem drug users.

In England alone, there were 14,053 hospital admissions where diagnosis was poisoning by illicit drugs and an additional 82,135 admissions due to drug related mental health or behavioral disorders.

In Scotland there were 5,468 emergency ambulance calls for drug issues putting extreme pressures on valuable resources.

It is estimated in 2020/21 that alcohol and drug harm costs the UK £32 billion every year in lost productivity, crime and policing, and the NHS £4 billion. People with drug problems cost an estimated £827,000 over the course of their lifetime.

According to Audit Scotland, it is estimated that 168,200 hospital bed days, used by all people with drug problems, the total cost was over £88.8 million.

And one for parents, according to recent figures, the likelihood of pupils having ever taken drugs increases with age, from 11% of 11 year olds to 37% of 15 year olds. An estimated 580,000 secondary school aged pupils in England (24%), took at least one drug last year. Excluding nitrous oxide and new psychoactive substances, this figure drops to 15%. Cannabis is the most widely used illegal drug, with 8% of secondary school pupils saying they took the drug in the last year, and 14% of 16 to 19 year olds.

The Children’s Society estimate there are 66,000 young people involved in County Lines, with some as young as 7 years old.

These are some of the outcomes from an NHS Digital’s Smoking, Drinking and Drug use among Young People (SDD) survey about young people who have taken drugs:

• 31% of pupils perceived it to be easy to get illegal drugs.

• Over half of 15 year olds (55%) thought it would be easy to get illegal drugs, compared with 8% of 11 year olds.

The following are all based on pupils who had taken drugs on more than one occasion:

• On the first occasion they tried drugs, 57% said they had got the drugs from a friend, with most of these being from a friend of the same age.

• Overall 11% said they got drugs from a dealer, but this was 29% where a class A drug was taken.

• 44% of pupils said they were outdoors (in a street, park or other outdoor area) when they last obtained drugs, by far the most common type of location. 12% said they obtained drugs whilst at school.


St Andrew Print are scratch and sniff specialist printers who collaborate with leading consultants having expertise in illegal drugs, health & wellbeing and community safety.

We can produce our drug awareness cards to a customised design and bespoke size to meet client’s corporate guidelines.

Our graphic design team will work closely with your marketing people to produce a design that is in keeping with your corporate image and to the highest quality printing standards.

To assist charities and non-profit organisations, we can offer a free print design service.

Prevention is Better than Cure

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