Primary Drug Reported by Clients Entering Treatment in France 2011

"In 2011, almost half of new patients (48%) were treated in specialised treatment centres for problems associated with cannabis use. A majority (57%) of them stated using cannabis every day. The percentage of people treated for their cannabis use was much lower among women (35% vs. 51%). The proportion of people using it daily was slightly lower among men, but this difference was not very marked (57% vs. 61%).
"The proportion of first-time treatment patients stating that cannabis posed the biggest problem was higher than that recorded in all new patients (71% vs. 48%). The breakdown of the frequency of use was similar in the two groups. The large number of cannabis users among patients in treatment in France is partly the consequence of the large and still increasing number of arrests for cannabis use. In fact, some of the users who have been arrested were sent to treatment centres by the courts.
"After cannabis, opiates are the second product most often cited as causing the majority of problems: 41% of new patients fall into this category. Of these patients, 77% stated heroin, 5% methadone and 18% other opiates (primarily HDB) 131. Of these patients, heroin was most frequently used nasally (65%), but one in every five heroin users still injects. The monthly percentage of injectors is much higher (37%) amongst other opiate users. Among the opiate users, almost 80% consumed these substances on a daily basis and 11% took them regularly (i.e., several times a week).
"Women are treated less often than men for cannabis use. However, they are treated far more than men for their opiate use (50% vs. 38%), regardless of the type of opiate in question. They used the injection route slightly less often than men to consume heroin (22% vs. 24%), but as often for the other opiates.
"The percentage of first-time treatment patients listing opiates as the substance posing the most problems is far lower than that recorded for all new patients (20% vs. 41%). Distribution of frequency of use is similar in the two groups although there is a slightly higher proportion of daily use among first-treatment patients. This group administers fewer injections during the month (15% versus 21%)."


l'Observatoire francais des drogues et des toxicomanies (OFDT), "2012 National Report (2011 data) to the EMCDDA by the Reitox National Focal Point: France: New Development, Trends and in-depth information on selected issues (Saint-Denis, France: OFDT, 2012), pp. 84-85.