The regulation of drugs – including alcohol and tobacco – is an issue of pressing importance due to the increasing health carecosts associated with their use and the new sorts of synthetic agents being developed and sold over the internet. Also the impact of the law to impede research and treatment innovation is of growing concern.
My talk will reflect on these issues in the light of my ten years experience on the governments Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs from which I was sacked some years ago. I shall present new analyses that compare the harms of drugs and alcohol using more sophisticated methodology and challenge many of the current misconceptions about drugs – their harms – and how to deal with them.
Finally I will call for the drug laws to be changed to the benefit of patients and researchers
Speaker: Prof. Nutt is currently the Edmond J. Safra Professor of Neuropsychopharmacology and director of the Neuropsychopharmacology Unit in the Division of Brain Sciences.
David broadcasts widely to the general public both on radio and television including BBC science and public affairs programmes on therapeutic as well as illicit drugs, their harms and their classification. He also lecturers widely to the public as well as to the scientific and medical communities; for instance has presented three time at the Cheltenham Science Festival and several times for Café Scientifiques but it was during his chairmanship of the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD) and his refusal to fudge the issue of perceived drug harm that brought him into the public spotlight.
In 2010 The Times Eureka science magazine included him in the 100 most important figures in British Science, and the only psychiatrist.