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Home > Cocaine treatment demands in ten Western European countries: observed trends between 2011 and 2018.

Antoine, Jérôme and Berndt, Nadine and Astudillo, Mariana and Cairns, Donal and Jahr, Stefan and Jones, Andrew and Kuijpers, Wil and Llorens, Noelia and Lyons, Suzi and Maffli, Etienne and Magliocchetti, Natalia and Olivas, Marta Molina and Palle, Christophe and Schwarzkopf, Larissa and Wisselink, Jeroen and Montanari, Linda (2020) Cocaine treatment demands in ten Western European countries: observed trends between 2011 and 2018. Addiction , Early online .

AIMS
To describe cocaine treatment demand in 10 western European countries and to examine the size, the direction and the temporality of recent trends in the proportion of cocaine users among all clients entering treatment.

DESIGN
Aggregated data collected through the EU standardised treatment demand monitoring system (TDI) between 2011 and 2018 were used.

SETTING
Belgium, England, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Spain, Switzerland and The Netherlands PARTICIPANTS: In total, more than 700,000 cocaine treatment records were analysed. Clients in treatment for cocaine as primary drug were predominantly male (85%) with an average age of 35 years.

MEASUREMENTS
Number of treatment episodes for substance use and for cocaine as primary or secondary drug were collected year- and country-wise. When available, powder cocaine and crack and patients with and without previous treatment were differentiated.

FINDINGS
Among the participating countries the share of cocaine as primary drug in treatment demand ranged between 4.7% (95% confidence interval (CI) = 4.6-4.9%) in Germany and 43.1% in Spain (95%CI=42.6-43.5%). The general trend analysis showed a decreasing proportion of cocaine-related treatment entrants between 2011 and 2014 among all subgroups followed by a strong increase in 2015. The increase appeared stronger than for powder cocaine. Seven out of 10 countries observed a recent significant increase in the proportion of treatment entrants reporting cocaine as primary substance: Belgium (Annual percent change (APC) = 9.6%, P <.01), England (APC = 14.9%, P <.05), France (APC = 21.8%, P <.01), Ireland (APC = 28.2%, P <.01), Italy (APC = 7.8%, P <.01), Spain (APC = 7.0%, P <.05), Switzerland (APC = 12.0%, P <.05). Trends were similar when looking at cocaine reported as primary or adjunctive substance.

CONCLUSIONS
Despite substantial country-specific variation regarding cocaine prevalence and treatment demand, there has been an overall significant increase since 2015 in the share of cocaine-related treatment demand in Western Europe.


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