The impact of the coronavirus is unpredictable and particularly so when looking at addiction policy, research and treatment. On Tuesday, Owen Bowden-Jones talked to the SSA about the potential impact of coronavirus on heroin supply lines, on people who use drugs and on drug treatment services; just a few of the many issues that the sector will face in the coming weeks and months.

Treatment centres will be balancing high demand for support, uncertain capacity, staffing challenges and logistical issues about providing medication.

Researchers recruiting participants are having to adjust protocols and timelines, desk-based researchers are adjusting to working at home and lab-based researchers are preparing back-up plans that are liable to be out of date by the end of the week. Conferences and meetings are being cancelled.

At the SSA, we are going to bring you updates on the impact of coronavirus on addiction policy, research and treatment and the implications for people who use drugs. We will keep an up-to-date list of useful links at the top of the news page and will post live updates via twitter – follow us at @SSA_Addiction. We will continue to bring you the perspectives of experts in addiction.

We are also going to post a series of videos from the 2019 conferences. We hope these can help those of you working away from your colleagues.

Please contact us at with information, questions or requests and we will work to respond as soon as possible.

The SSA team, 19 March 2020.

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