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Moore, Joan (2007) From Drugnet Europe. Drugnet Ireland , Issue 23, Autumn 2007 , p. 26.

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Raising awareness of HPV

 

Cited from article by Alessandro Pirona and Dagmar Hedrich, Drugnet Europe No. 59, July–September 2007, p.3

 

The recent authorisation by the European Commission of a prophylactic vaccine against the

Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) could greatly improve the prevention of HPV infections in

Europe and help reduce the incidence of cervical cancer.

 

HPV is highly transmissible and is linked to virtually all cervical cancer cases. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), it is the second biggest cause of female cancer mortality worldwide, claiming around 250,000 lives annually. Every year, some 15,000 women die from this preventable disease in Europe, with the newer EU Member States reporting twice as many cervical cancer cases as the old EU-15. …

 

Young female drug users, especially those involved in sex work, are at a high risk of contracting sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HPV, due to high levels of risky sexual behaviour. Studies conducted in Spain and Denmark showed that, in all age groups, HPV prevalence was highest among female sex workers (over 65% in the 'under-20' year group), followed by women attending STI clinics and in prison. …

 

Outreach health services and STI or HIV clinics linked to drug treatment services can contribute to raising awareness on HPV and to increasing vaccine coverage by disseminating information to young female drug users. However, targeted cervical screening and safe-sex practices remain crucial components in preventing cervical cancer.

 

Local authorities, a ‘logical partner’ in tackling drugs

 

Cited from paper released by Wolfgang Götz, EMCDDA Director on 26 June 2007, Drugnet Europe No. 59, July–September 2007, p.4.

 

Local authorities are a logical partner in dealing with drug-related problems. They are best placed to fine-tune and adapt drug policies to the needs and resources of their community. They are also at the frontline in the fight against drug-related crime and in dealing with the social repercussions of drug use.

 

One of the main tests for local decision-makers is finding the right balance between protecting the wider community against drug-related crime, on the one hand, and, on the other hand, helping drug users through social and healthcare interventions to reduce their risk-taking and guide them into treatment.

 

Treating drug users is very often the domain of local authorities, as services are frequently managed and financed at local level. I believe that one of the main challenges for local authorities in the coming years in tackling drugs will be precisely in this area. One reason is that, although treatment centres are generally more numerous and better equipped today than they were a decade ago, they are still very much geared towards problems relating to heroin use (e.g. there are now over half a million people in Europe in drug substitution treatment). But, as more and more individuals seek treatment for problems linked to synthetic drugs, cannabis, cocaine or polydrug use, services will need to adapt to more, and very varied, problems.

 

Among the new developments we have witnessed in the last five years in the prevention of drug use in Europe is 'selective prevention', aimed at high-risk groups, families and communities who are often by-passed by prevention work in more traditional settings.

Our 2006 Annual Report noted a greater involvement here of municipalities, as selective prevention calls for cooperation between youth, education, health, social and law enforcement services which is typically local.

 

Drug-related public expenditure

 

Cited from an article by Xavier Poos, Drugnet Europe No. 59, July–September 2007, p.6.

 

'Producing estimates of public expenditure on drugs' is a key objective of the current EU drugs action plan (2005–2008). In this context, the EMCDDA will support the European Commission and EU Member States in developing a common methodology to estimate direct and indirect drug-related expenditure in the EU, candidate countries and Norway.

 

Current research at the EMCDDA is aimed at identifying, developing and testing methods at EU level for quantifying public expenditure in this field. In close collaboration with the Reitox network and international experts, the agency is also working on a 'Selected issue' on public expenditure to be released alongside its 2008 Annual Report.

 

 

Drugnet Europe is the quarterly newsletter of the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA). Drugs in focus is a series of policy briefings published by the EMCDDA. Both publications are available at www.emcdda.europa.eu.

 

If you would like a hard copy of the current or future issues of either publication, please contact: Alcohol and Drug Research Unit, Health Research Board, Knockmaun House, 42–47 Lower Mount Street, Dublin 2. Tel: 01 2345 127; Email: adru@hrb.ie.

 

 

Item Type:Article
Issue Title:Issue 23, Autumn 2007
Date:July 2007
Page Range:p. 26
Publisher:Health Research Board
Volume:Issue 23, Autumn 2007
EndNote:View
Accession Number:HRB (Available)
Subjects:VA Geographic area > Europe
J Health care, prevention and rehabilitation > Health-related prevention > Health information and education > Communicable disease control
MP-MR Policy, planning, economics, work and social services > Economic aspects of drugs and alcohol (cost / pricing)
MA-ML Social science, culture and community > Community action > Community involvement

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