Martin Compston: Line of Duty star voices TV campaign to help prevent drug deaths in Scotland

Martin Compston returns to the nation’s television screens on Monday, having voiced a series of adverts to help prevent drug deaths in Scotland.

The Line of Duty star will be heard encouraging people to order naloxone, the medication which can reverse the effects of a drug overdose.

In the adverts, Greenock-born Compston says: “Would you recognise the signs of a drug overdose? Unresponsive, snoring, blue lips, to name a few.”

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It is the latest stage of a campaign that launched in August, backed by the Scottish Government.

Martin Compston has voiced a series of television adverts encouraging people to order the naloxone medication which can reverse the effects of a drug overdose.

It encourages the public to visit a website – www.stopthedeaths.com – which gives tips on how to recognise a drug overdose and what steps to take.

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And it urges people to order the freely available medication naloxone, which can be given as a nasal spray and can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose.

Opioids, like heroin and methadone, were implicated in 89% of Scotland’s 1,339 drug-related deaths in 2020.

The campaign – titled We Can Prevent Drug Deaths – also includes ads on radio, billboards, buses and trains and will run until November.

David Liddell, CEO of policy and information organisation Scottish Drugs Forum, said: “This is a significant campaign not only in raising the issue of drug related deaths and how they can be prevented, but in terms of the stigma suffered by people who have a drug problem.

“The public health emergency around drug related deaths in Scotland has continued partly because of that stigma.

“The investment in this high-profile campaign by government is a clear indicator of a change in public attitudes and the government has shown leadership on this."

Kirsten Horsburgh, strategic co-ordinator in drug death prevention at Scottish Drugs Forum, added: “Time is of the essence when someone becomes unresponsive after an overdose and can be crucial in terms of avoiding death or serious brain injury. We need everyone to be able to recognise an overdose, intervene and call 999.

“Naloxone helps buy the person time while waiting for an ambulance to arrive.

“If a person is not breathing or there is not enough oxygen supply to the brain then that person is obviously in very real danger. We encourage everyone to visit www.stopthedeaths.com to learn more and to carry naloxone.”

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