The Ecstasy and Related Drugs Reporting System (EDRS) is a national monitoring system for ecstasy and related drugs that is intended to identify emerging trends of local and national interest in the markets for these drugs. The EDRS is based on the Illicit Drug Reporting System (IDRS) methodology and consists of three components: interviews with regular ecstasy and psychostimulant users (REU/RPU); interviews with key experts (KEs), professionals who have regular contact with regular recreational users through their work; and analysis and examination of indicator data sources related to ecstasy and other related drugs. The EDRS monitors the price, purity, availability and patterns of use of ecstasy, methamphetamine, cocaine, ketamine, GHB, MDA and LSD. The EDRS is designed to be sensitive to trends, providing data in a timely manner, rather than describing issues in extensive detail.

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The aims of this project are:

  • to describe the characteristics of a sample of current regular ecstasy and psychostimulant users interviewed in each capital city of Australia
  • to examine the patterns of ecstasy and other drug use of these samples
  • to document the current price, purity and availability of ecstasy and other party drugs across Australia
  • to examine the incidence and nature of harms related to the use of ERDs
  • to identify emerging trends in the party drug market that may require further investigation


Design and Method

Previously known as the Party Drug Initiative (PDI), the EDRS is coordinated by the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, and is conducted by different research institutions in each Australian state and territory. The EDRS uses a similar methodology to the Illicit Drug Reporting System (IDRS). Regular ecstasy and psychostimulant users are interviewed as they were identified as a group of drug users that are able to provide the required information on patterns of ecstasy and related drugs (ERDs) use, the current availability, price and purity of ERDs and perceived drug-related health issues associated with ERDs use. A semi-structured survey of experts in the field of ERDs (e.g. party promoters, treatment providers and law enforcement personnel) is also conducted and indicator data (e.g. purity of drug seizures and overdose rates) are analysed. These data sources are examined together to identify convergent trends in ERDs use and markets.   




The EDRS was conducted successfully in every state and territory in 2016. 795 regular psychostimulant users were interviewed, providing information on their drug use patterns, ecstasy and related drug markets and related issues. KEs from a range of professions provided information on the RPU they had contact with. Indicator data including Australian Customs Service seizures, purity analysis and treatment data were examined.


The project is ongoing in 2016.





For answers to frequently asked questions about the EDRS please visit our FAQ page



Project Collaborators: External


Paul Dietze (Burnet Institute)

Arthur Truong (Burnet Institute)

Raimondo Bruno (University of Tasmania)

Bethany Lusk (University of Tasmania)

Rosa Alati (University of Queensland)

Caroline Salom (University of Queensland)

Simon Lenton (National Drug Research Institute)

Marina Nelson (National Drug Research Institute)



Project Supporters

Australian Government Department of Health