A new capsules tsar has been appointed through the Scottish government to advise on regulations to tackle the rising quantity of drugs deaths.

Prof Catriona Matheson’s appointment comes ahead of the e-book of recent figures, which are predicted to reveal drug deaths topped 1,000 final years.

She will chair a new taskforce, announced with the aid of ministers in March, to examine Scotland’s tablets laws.

Drug legislation is presently reserved to Westminster.

The taskforce will take a look at the 1971 Misuse of Drugs Act and don’t forget if factors of it could be devolved to permit medically-supervised drug intake rooms – so-known as “restoration rooms”.

What are ‘restore rooms’?

The rooms could allow addicts to administer their own unlawful capsules beneath medical supervision to lessen street injecting.

However, the UK Home Office has refused the Scottish government moves to relax the present day regulations and allow the consumption rooms to be created.

There were 934 drug-associated deaths registered in Scotland in 2017, up sixty-six (eight%) at the previous year, and more than double the UK average.

The toll changed into the highest degree because present-day statistics started in 1996 and greater than double the 445 deaths in 2007.

Prof Matheson, of the University of Stirling, is a trustee of the Society for the Study of Addiction and convener of the Drugs Research Network Scotland.

She instructed BBC radio’s Good Morning Scotland program a “non-judgemental approach” changed into had to address drug misuse and there was sturdy evidence for decriminalization.

She said: “Although previous drug techniques have been nicely-that means, occasionally they have been based on a criminal justice-kind foundation.

“What could be very welcome is that now we have a new approach based totally around public health that takes a public health and human rights approach, and that is what we need.”

She added: “Decriminalisation, the evidence is powerful for that across the world. There are several countries that have gone down that path and decriminalization is sincerely approximately not setting this group of marginalized drug users into prison and filling our prisons up with humans who’ve hassle drug-use because that further marginalizes them and makes their healing all the more difficult.”

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