European Union

Integrated Approach to Licit and Illicit Drugs

(Integrated Approach to Licit and Illicit Drugs) "The trend towards an integrated approach to substance use appears to exist primarily among the pre-2004 EU Member States. It is these countries that have adopted a global strategy, or that are in the process of integrating their illicit drug and alcohol strategies or that have included many licit drug objectives in their illicit drug strategy. In central and eastern Europe, the picture is mainly one of separate strategies or just illicit drug strategies, with limited mention of licit drugs."

Impact of National Policies on Drug Use Prevalence in the EU

(Impact of National Policies on Drug Use Prevalence in the EU) "Differences in the prevalence of drug use are influenced by a variety of factors in each country. As countries with more liberal drug policies (such as the Netherlands) and those with a more restricted approach (such as Sweden) have not very different prevalence rates, the impact of national drug policies (more liberal versus more restrictive approaches) on the prevalence of drug use and especially problem drug use remains unclear.

Drug Control Spending Cuts in the EU Caused by Economic Downturn

(Drug Control Spending Cuts in the EU Caused by Economic Downturn) "Many European countries continue to face the
consequences of the recent economic downturn. The extent of fiscal consolidation or austerity measures and their impact differs between European countries. Among the 18 countries with sufficient data to make a comparison, reductions were reported in health and public order and safety — the areas of government spending where most drug-related public expenditure originates.

'Global' Scope

('Global' Scope) "Five countries have adopted strategies or action plans that have a ‘global’ scope, covering licit and illicit drugs and, in some cases, addictive behaviours.

EU Drug Strategy

(EU Drug Strategy) "The EU Drug Strategy has no main priorities specifically focusing on national strategies, laws and public expenditure, however, the cross-cutting theme of coordination does include an objective to: ‘Ensure that a balanced and integrated approach is reflected in national policies and in the EU approach towards third countries and in international fora’.

SEPs and HIV

(SEPs and HIV) A literature review in 2004 by the European Union's drug monitoring agency, the European Monitoring Centre on Drugs and Drug Addiction, found that "Major reviews (summarised in Vlahov and Junge, 1998; Bastos and Strathdee, 2000; Ferrini, 2000) suggest that NSPs (Needle and Syringe Programs) may reduce rates of seroconversion to HIV and hepatitis by one third or more, without negative side effects on the number of IDUs (Vlahov and Junge, 1998). A landmark study from Hurley et al.

School-Based Prevention

(School-Based Prevention) "Interactive programmes based on the model of social influence or life skill competence have been shown to be effective in schools, but individual measures carried out in isolation (for example, only communication of information, affective education or other non-interactive measures) have been negatively evaluated (Bühler and Kröger, 2006). For organisational reasons, school-based prevention is usually the responsibility of local authorities, especially in the Nordic countries, France and Poland."

Opioids Do Not Have Potential To Cause Malformations To An Embryo Or Fetus

"It is important to note that, contrary to alcohol, benzodiazepines and nicotine, opioids do not have teratogenic potential (3). Thus, special attention needs to be paid to dependence and abuse of legal substances and prescription drugs that can have severe consequences for the foetus and newborn, such as foetal developmental disorders or sudden infant death syndrome (Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Center for Excellence, 2013; McDonnell-Naughton et al., 2012)."