Addiction :: Figures show fall in heroin injection

Statistics released today show a reduction in the reported number of heroin users injecting the drug, and a reduction in the number of addicts sharing needles.

Key figures from the Annual Compendium of Drug Misuse Statistics show that:

The percentage of new clients entering drug treatment services who reported using heroin has remained steady at 68 per cent during the past year, down from 77 per cent in 2001-02
29 per cent of individuals reported they had injected drugs in the month prior to treatment, compared to 38 per cent in 2001-02, and the numbers sharing needles was at its lowest in the last five years
The percentage of illicit drug users who reported using cocaine increased to 11 per cent, compared to eight per cent in 2004-05

Justice Minister Cathy Jamieson said:

“Drug misuse remains a problem for many individuals, their families and communities across the country. Nevertheless we are having some success in the key areas of our drugs strategy – a strategy which is rightly based around enforcement, prevention, education, and drug treatment and rehabilitation.

“We must remember that behind these statistics are real life stories of ill health, missed opportunities, family heartache, and of course crime. That’s why we can never be complacent and must continually look at new ways of improving the effectiveness of what we are doing to tackle the problem of drug misuse in Scotland.

“Relentless enforcement work by our police remains the front line in our efforts to tackle the supply of drugs. High profile campaigns – such as the Know the Score campaign to address the increasing use of cocaine – are having an impact in preventing young people from being lured into drug taking. And we are building on education programmes that are now available across the nation’s schools.

“To help those already in the grip of addiction, we are investing in a range of drug treatment services to bring down waiting times across the country – including innovative new community-based abstinence based and detox projects announced in October. We are also reviewing the place of methadone in drug treatment to ensure treatment is more focussed on getting people to lead drug free lives, as well as stabilising their immediate addiction problems.

“We are also introducing new ways of more effectively linking addiction and criminal justice interventions – through arrest referral schemes, Drug Treatment and Testing Orders in every court, and mandatory drug testing for those arrested on drug or drug-related offences.

“Annual statistics such as these provide an opportunity for taking stock to consider the work which is taking place, and what further work needs to be done. I believe that there is actually a great deal of consensus across the Parliament about the approach that should be taken in tackling drug misuse. An approach in which we are collectively focused on getting more people drug free and back into productive working and family lives.”

Background:

The Information Services Division (ISD) of NHS Scotland has today issued its annual compendium of drug misuse statistics.

Figures from the Scottish Drug Enforcement Agency’s (SDEA) annual report show that last year, the organisation, working with the police and other agencies, managed to seize a record 383.5kg in hard drugs, with a street value of ?22.3 million.

Meanwhile, the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service is continuing to confiscate record sums from those profiting from drug activity and other related forms of serious organised crime. Between April and October, almost ?1.8 million was recovered from such criminals between April and October, under the Proceeds of Crime Act. In addition, assets valued at an estimated ?12.5 million were frozen for potential future confiscation during those six months.

Sub-editor

Addiction :: Figures show fall in heroin injection
by ( Author at Spirit India )
Posted on at 2:54 pm.
Find more from SpiritIndia on: Health