Estonia Country Drug Report 2019

Quality assurance

The Estonian White Paper on Drug Prevention Policy emphasises quality standards in the field of drug use reduction, and all its pillars integrate evidence-based approaches and the quality of services. The paper includes an independent monitoring system, which tracks the implementation of all pillars and collects data on the effectiveness of various interventions. The evaluation and mapping of interventions in the field of illicit substances is one of the sub-objectives of the paper. The Government Committee on Drug Prevention is responsible for the coordination of activities related to the reduction of drug use in Estonia, including conducting consistent monitoring and evaluation of activities related to responding to and preventing drug use.

The National Institute for Health Development (NIHD) monitors the quality of services and programmes for drug users (treatment, rehabilitation, counselling services) and prevention activities. The NIHD makes regular random visits to services to check their compliance with the provisions of the service contracts, it is responsible for client satisfaction and various mapping surveys in treatment and rehabilitation centres, and it produces methodological materials in the field of drug demand reduction. The Estonian Health Board is an independent institution under the Ministry of Social Affairs and conducts control visits to treatment services to check compliance with the requirements stipulated in various healthcare provider laws and regulations.

Drug demand reduction and universal prevention topics are part of the curricula in two higher education institutions’ health promotion courses, at Tallinn Health Care College and Haapsalu College, Tallinn University.

In the context of the European-financed project on the universal curriculum for prevention (UPC-Adapt), an emerging need to train decision-makers, policymakers and opinion leaders on evidence-based prevention interventions was identified, and the project subsequently piloted training for these stakeholders.


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Methodological note: Analysis of trends is based only on those countries providing sufficient data to describe changes over the period specified. The reader should also be aware that monitoring patterns and trends in a hidden and stigmatised behaviour like drug use is both practically and methodologically challenging. For this reason, multiple sources of data are used for the purposes of analysis in this report. Caution is therefore required in interpretation, in particular when countries are compared on any single measure. Detailed information on methodology and caveats and comments on the limitations in the information set available can be found in the EMCDDA Statistical Bulletin.