European Union

Homelessness and Drug Use

(Homelessness and Drug Use) "Abstaining from or reducing drug use, engaging with and completing education, as well as securing and sustaining employment can all be great challenges if an individual has no access to supportive structures such as stable accommodation. Eight per cent of all outpatient clients in the EU starting a new treatment episode in 2009 were living in unstable accommodation (see Figure 1 on p. 45). This ranged from 2 % in Estonia to 20 % in France, 21 % in the Czech Republic and 33 % in Luxembourg.

New HIV Diagnoses in the EU by Method of Transmission

(New HIV Diagnoses in the EU by Method of Transmission) "Men who have sex with men (MSM) accounted for 39% of new HIV diagnoses (n=10,885) in 2011 in the EU/EEA (38% in 2010 [2]; 35% in 2009 [3]). MSM accounted for more than 50% of the cases in nine countries and more than 30% in another eight countries. Heterosexual transmission accounted for 36% of the HIV infections (n=10,118): more than a third of those cases originated from sub-Saharan Africa countries with a generalised HIV epidemic.

HIV Related to Injection Drug Use in the EU

(HIV Related to Injection Drug Use in the EU) "Data on reported newly diagnosed cases related to injecting drug use for 2010 suggest that, overall, infection rates are still falling in the European Union, following a peak in 2001–02. Of the five countries reporting the highest rates of newly diagnosed infections among injecting drug users between 2005 and 2010, Spain and Portugal continued their downward trend, while, among the others, only Latvia reported a small increase (Figure 17) (108).

International Comparisons of Cocaine Prevalence

(International Comparisons of Cocaine Prevalence) "Compared with some other parts of the world for which reliable data exist, the estimated last year prevalence of cocaine use among young adults in Europe (2.1%) is below the levels reported for young adults in Australia (4.8 %) and the United States (4.0% among 16- to 34-year-olds), but close to that reported for Canada (1.8%). Two European countries, Spain (4.4%) and the United Kingdom (4.2%), report figures similar to those of Australia and the United States (Figure 9)."

Estimated Prevalence of MDMA (Ecstasy) Use in the EU

(Estimated Prevalence of MDMA (Ecstasy) Use in the EU) "MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxy-methamphetamine) is commonly used in the form of ecstasy tablets, but is also increasingly available as crystals and powders; tablets are usually swallowed, but in powder form the drug is also snorted (nasal insufflation).
"In recent years, monitoring sources based in a number of countries have been signalling new developments within Europe’s MDMA market, including reports of increased use.

Per Capita Alcohol Consumption in the EU

(Per Capita Alcohol Consumption in the EU) "The European Union (EU) is the region with the highest alcohol consumption in the world: in 2009, average adult (aged 15+ years) alcohol consumption in the EU was 12.5 litres of pure alcohol – 27g of pure alcohol or nearly three drinks a day, more than double the world average. Although there are many individual country differences, alcohol consumption in the EU as a whole has continued at a stable level over the past decade."

Initiation of Drug Use While In Prison

(Initiation of Drug Use While In Prison) "Imprisonment forces some drug users to stop using drugs, and some will see this as an opportunity to improve their lives. For others, however, prison may be a setting for initiation into drug use or for switching from one drug to another, often due to lack of availability of the preferred drug inside prison (Fazel et al., 2006; Stöver and Weilandt, 2007) and other possible reasons (e.g. use of substances for which avoiding control measures is easier).

Trends in Drug Supply and Possession Offenses in the EU, 2012

(Trends in Drug Supply and Possession Offenses in the EU, 2012) "There has been no major shift in the balance between drug law offences related to use and those related to supply compared with previous years. In most (22) European countries, offences related to drug use or possession for use continued to comprise the majority of drug law offences in 2010, with Spain, France, Hungary, Austria and Turkey reporting the highest proportions (85–93%) (32).

MDMA (Ecstasy or Molly), Harm Reduction, and Dosage Information

(MDMA (Ecstasy or Molly), Harm Reduction, and Dosage Information) "Apart from warnings issued against dangerous and unexpected pills, dosage makes a difference. In terms of neurotoxicity, several scientific studies pointed out that, among other factors, the probability for possible neurotoxic damage in the serotonergic system grows with the amount of MDMA being consumed.

MDMA (Ecstasy) and Harm Reduction

(MDMA (Ecstasy) and Harm Reduction) "In the context of new synthetic drugs there are some well-established approaches to reduce harm such as handing out condoms for free or giving out drinking water to reduce or stabilise body temperature and to avoid heatstroke. In addition, there are possible harms in the party scene that can be countered by pill-testing projects only. All pill-testing projects inform consumers about very dangerous and unexpected pills on site, through magazines and posters or through the Internet."