Today, 15 November 2012, the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) in Lisbon, published its 17th annual report on the state of the drugs problem in Europe.
In this year’s report, the Centre raises concerns over a complex stimulant market with a diversity of powders and pills used today. While cocaine, ecstasy and amphetamines continue to be the main stimulants used, they are now competing with a growing number of emerging synthetic drugs, such as cathinones, one of the largest groups of new drugs being reported in Europe today.
The report also shows a decline in heroin use. While heroin-related problems continue, at lower levels, the Centre states that ‘we may now be moving into a new era in which heroin will play a less central role in Europe’s drugs problem’.
A chapter dedicated to drug-related infectious diseases and drug-related deaths stresses that regardless of the substance used, drug injecting continues to be an important vehicle for the transmission of infectious diseases, including HIV and hepatitis C, with new HIV outbreaks recently experienced by some European countries underlining the importance of maintaining effective public health response in this area.
The EMCDDA annual report 2012 is available for downloading in 22 languages on the Centre’s website: http://www.emcdda.europa.eu/publications/annual-report/2012.