Illicit drugs

Drug abuse poses a global problem, which requires international cooperation and interdisciplinary and multisectoral action. In response to the rising drug problems in Europe, WHO/Europe gives special attention to supporting the development of national policies and action plans to reduce the demand for drugs.

Prevention is the best means of fighting the problem, but the Regional Office also works to develop treatment programmes and modalities. The rapid rises in drug-related deaths and in infectious diseases related to drug abuse – especially HIV infection and hepatitis B and C – show the need for programmes to minimize risk.