Drug deaths now 'a public health emergency'

But Switzerland offers glimpse of what could be
The Huffington Post (UK)
Saturday, October 22, 2016

needle-park-zurich2“The lessons of a failing national policy need to be learnt,” is the conclusion experts drew about the surge in drug deaths. Deaths from heroin more than doubled to 1,201 in 2015 - the highest since 1993. A British Medical Journal (BMJ) editorial said part of the reason was “massive changes in national policy” since 2010, when the national drugs strategy moved the emphasis from harm reduction to drugs abstinence. This change created the incentive for drugs services to get people off treatment when they are not ready, the BMJ article says. Switzerland saved lives when it began its radical experiment with giving heroin addicts a place to inject it under supervision.