Journal article

Estimating the burden of disease attributable to illicit drug use and mental disorders: what is 'Global Burden of Disease 2005' and why does it matter?

Louisa Degenhardt, Harvey Whiteford, Wayne Hall, Theo Vos

Addiction | WILEY | Published : 2009


Funding Acknowledgements

The Global Burden of Disease (GBD) is a large multi-disciplinary undertaking, being led by a consortium of researchers at Harvard University (USA), the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington (Seattle, USA), Johns Hopkins University (USA), the University of Queensland (Australia) and the World Health Organization (WHO) (Switzerland). Details of the core GBD2005 team ( and the core GBD work ( are available elsewhere. The Expert Group on Mental and Illicit Drug Use Disorders advises the core team on current evidence regarding the epidemiology of mental disorders, illicit drug use and both conceptual and methodological issues related to estimates of the prevalence, incidence, duration and mortality associated with such disorders. The Group comprises the following core members: Professor Louisa Degenhardt (co-chair), Professor Harvey Whiteford (co-chair), Professor John McGrath, Professor Wayne Hall, Dr Guilherme Polanczyk, Dr Shekhar Saxena, Professor Oye Gureje, Professor Ronald Kessler, Dr Cille Kennedy, Dr Maria Elena Medina-Mora and Professor Martin Prince. Many other individuals have also provided very useful contributions to the work so far (see Special thanks to the research teams at NDARC and UQ who are conducting a wide range of challenging systematic reviews to inform this work. The Gates Foundation has funded the core work of the GBD Consortium, but the work of the Mental Disorders and Illicit Drug Use Expert Group has received no such funding. No dedicated funding has been received in the form of any project grants for this work; the two group Chairs are dedicating available research monies to this work, and all the time and efforts of all Expert Group members are being provided without funding or reimbursement. Louisa Degenhardt is the recipient of an Australian NH&MRC Senior Research Fellowship. More information about the work being carried out can be found on the Mental Disorders and Illicit Drug Use Expert Group website: