Heroin deaths in Tower Hamlets among highest in London

A seizure of heroin. Picture: PA

A seizure of heroin. Picture: PA - Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

Tower Hamlets has one of London’s highest rates of death from heroin and morphine, figures show.

The borough had the fifth highest rate in the capital—1.6 deaths for every 100,000 people, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Its analysis showed Hackney was London’s hotspot for heroin and morphine deaths, at 2.7 deaths per 100,000 between 2014 and 2016, followed by Haringey (2.6) and Camden (2.1).

The national average in England, by comparison, is 1.7 and 2.3 in Wales.

Nationally, coastal holiday resorts make up six of the 10 areas with the highest such death rates in England and Wales, the ONS said.

Public Health England suggests a link between drug misuse and social deprivation; with unemployment, poor quality housing and poverty associated with substance abuse, as well as potentially lower success rates of treatment.

Death rates from drug-related poisoning, be they misuse or not, increase as regions become more deprived, as measured by the latest Index of Multiple Deprivation.