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Maria José Louro
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People who inject drugs (PWID) are a key population affected by the hepatitis C virus (HCV). Treatment options are improving and may enhance prevention; however access for PWID may be poor. To coincide with World Hepatitis Day, the open-access online journal PLOS ONE publishes the results of an EMCDDA systematic review on data for the scaling up of HCV treatment and prevention for PWID across the European Union.
Wolfgang Götz has been Director of the EMCDDA since May 2005, having been appointed by the agency’s Management Board on 19 April that year. In July 2009, the Board renewed his mandate unanimously for a further five-year term commencing on 1 May 2010. See updated profile here.
Exchanging strategic and technical information in the areas of drug legislation and supply was among the pledges made today in a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed by the EU drugs agency (EMCDDA) and the EU judicial cooperation unit (Eurojust). At an official ceremony in The Hague, EMCDDA Director Wolfgang Götz and President of Eurojust Michèle Coninsx reaffirmed their agencies’ commitment to strengthening action against illicit drugs and related crime in the EU.
The third European drugs summer school (EDSS) — ‘Illicit drugs in Europe: demand, supply and public policies’ — opens today in Lisbon and will run until 11 July. The initiative, organised by the University Institute of Lisbon (ISCTE) and the EU drugs agency (EMCDDA), is supported by the US National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA).
An estimated 28 000 lives are lost on Europe’s roads every year and a further 1.34 million people are injured. Many of these accidents and deaths are caused by drivers whose performance is impaired by a psychoactive substance. In a new report out today, Drug use, impaired driving and traffic accidents, the EU drugs agency (EMCDDA) reviews the latest research in this field.
The findings of the largest European project to date in the emerging science of wastewater analysis (WWA) are released today in an article published in Addiction. The project in question — steered by the Europe-wide SCORE network — analysed wastewater in over 40 European cities to explore the drug-taking habits of those who live in them.
The EMCDDA releases today alongside its European Drug Report 2014: Trends and developments, six new additions to its Perspectives on drugs (PODs) series. This latest selection of online, interactive analyses provides a state-of-the-art review of key aspects of the European drug situation.
Europe’s drugs problem is becoming increasingly complex with new challenges emerging that raise concerns for public health. This is according to the European Drug Report 2014: Trends and developments released today by the EMCDDA.
Third international conference on novel psychoactive substances opens today in Rome.
The EMCDDA will be presenting its annual overview of the European drug situation on 27 May in a multilingual, multimedia information package focusing on today’s rapidly shifting drug phenomenon.
Monitoring and responding to HIV and hepatitis C among people who inject drugs (PWID) is the focus of two new reports from the EU drugs agency (EMCDDA) and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).
The EMCDDA Scientific Committee, meeting in Lisbon this week, elected its new Chair and Vice Chair for the next three years. Prof. Dr Gerhard Bühringer (Germany) was elected to the position of Chair and Dr Anne Line Breteville-Jensen (Norway) to the position of Vice Chair.
The EU drugs agency (EMCDDA) has released today its first comparative analysis of regional drug strategies across the world. The paper explores the drug strategies and action plans adopted over the last five years by six intergovernmental organisations, engaging 148 countries in four continents.
Europol and the EMCDDA have issued today early-warning notifications about two synthetic drugs that have recently been linked to serious harms in the EU.
A new, two-year technical cooperation project between the EU drugs agency (EMCDDA) and countries of the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) kicks off today in Lisbon. The project takes place within the EMCDDA’s mandate for cooperation with third (non-EU) countries, as set out in its recast founding regulation in 2006.
The EMCDDA’s 2014 work programme — adopted by the Management Board on 5 December and published today — takes forward work begun in 2013 to implement the core principles of the EMCDDA’s 2013–15 strategy and work programme. Three core principles drive this three-year strategy and also shape and focus activities in 2014. These include: delivering a relevant, timely and responsive analysis of the drug situation; achieving efficiency and ensuring that maximum value is delivered from activities and investments; and enhancing communication and a customer-focused approach.
The European Union and Israel will share information on drugs more systematically in future, thanks to a Memorandum of Understanding signed today in Jerusalem between the EMCDDA and the Israel Anti-Drug Authority (IADA). The agreement was signed at the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs by EMCDDA Director Wolfgang Götz and IADA Director-General Yair Geller.
Harmful and hazardous alcohol use is one of the main causes of premature deaths and avoidable diseases in the EU today. Highlighting the importance of this issue, the European Commission is funding the Joint Action on Reducing Alcohol Related Harm (RARHA) project, being launched in Lisbon on 31 January
Europe has responded to rising concern over the use of four new drugs by formally requesting a scientific investigation into the health and social risks of the substances. The drugs are: 25I-NBOMe, AH-7921, MDPV and methoxetamine.
The University Institute of Lisbon (ISCTE–IUL) and the EU drugs agency (EMCDDA) will be joining forces again in July 2014 to hold the third European summer school on ‘Illicit drugs in Europe: supply, demand and public policies’. Registration opens today for the two-week course, which will take place in the Portuguese capital from 30 June to 11 July. The initiative is supported by the US National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA).
On 5 December, the EMCDDA Management Board appointed 15 high-level scientists to serve on the agency’s Scientific Committee for the period 2014–16. The new members have been informed today of the Management Board’s decision. The mandate of the current Committee draws to a close at the end of 2013.
The EMCDDA publishes today the first four studies in a brand new series of ‘EMCDDA Papers’. Primarily targeting policymakers and specialists, the papers are designed as brief and timely web-based products on a variety of topics in the drugs field.
Ahead of World AIDS Day on 1 December, the EMCDDA has released today a new toolkit offering countries the latest guidance on monitoring infectious diseases, such as HIV/AIDS and viral hepatitis, among people who inject drugs (PWID).
Sharing evidence to help prevent and reduce harm related to addiction is the focus of a workshop hosted by the EMCDDA in Lisbon this week. The two-day event, opening today, is organised by the European Agency for Health and Consumers (EACH), in collaboration with the European Commission.
A set of Council conclusions on improving the monitoring of drug supply in the European Union was adopted by the Economic and Financial Affairs Council meeting in Brussels today. The need to scale up the monitoring of illicit drug supply in Europe is an important component of the current EU drugs strategy (2013–20).
Ambassador Paul E. Simons, Executive Secretary of the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD) of the Organisation of American States (OAS) visits the EMCDDA today to discuss with the agency’s Director Wolfgang Götz perspectives for the next EMCDDA–CICAD work programme (2014–18).
The four winners of the 2013 EMCDDA scientific paper award will be honoured in Lisbon this week at the third annual award ceremony hosted by the EU agency. The winners — based in Germany, Austria, Norway and at the EMCDDA — will receive a non-monetary prize for their contributions on 7 November in the margins of the EMCDDA’s Scientific Committee meeting.
As of 28 October 2013, six cases of wound botulism have been reported in Norway among people who had injected heroin.
It is 20 years today since the EMCDDA’s founding regulation entered into force. Over this period, the agency has established strong mechanisms in Europe to carry out regular and sustained monitoring of developments in the drugs field.
EU drug markets, Cannabis production and markets and New heroin-assisted treatment – the three EMCDDA publications recognised among the ‘notable government documents 2012’ of the American Library Association.
EMCDDA Director Wolfgang Götz will be opening a workshop today in Zadar, Croatia, in his first official visit to the country since its accession to the EU in July 2013. The two-day workshop, which focuses on Croatia’s national drug monitoring system, is being organised by the European Commission’s Technical Assistance and Information and Exchange Instrument (TAIEX), in cooperation with the EMCDDA and the Office for Combating Drug Abuse of the Government of the Republic of Croatia (Reitox national focal point).
‘Analysing, interpreting and disseminating drug-related data to facilitate decision-making’ will be the focus of an innovative training course hosted by the EU drugs agency (EMCDDA) this week in Lisbon. Opening today and running until 2 October, the event is a thematic twinning initiative of the EU’s Cooperation Programme between Latin America and the European Union on Drugs Policies (COPOLAD).
The first EMCDDA week on ‘Measuring, understanding and responding to drug problems in Europe’ opens today in Lisbon. The initiative represents a new and integrated take on the usual format of the agency’s five yearly expert meetings, to date dedicated to each of the EMCDDA key epidemiological indicators.
The EMCDDA welcomes the European Commission’s proposal today to strengthen the EU’s response to new psychoactive substances (‘new drugs’). The proposal follows an unprecedented rise in the number of new drugs detected in Europe in recent years and a Commission review of the EU’s current legal mechanism for monitoring and acting on these new substances.
International experts convene in Swansea (UK) today to examine the latest scientific research in the rapidly-changing field of new drugs. The Second international conference on novel psychoactive substances is hosted by the College of Human and Health Sciences at Swansea University, in collaboration with Hertfordshire University and the EMCDDA.
Members of the European Parliament Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) will visit the EU drugs agency (EMCDDA) on 18 and 19 July and hear why a sound evidence base is essential for effective policymaking and action in the drugs field.
Addiction is a global issue that costs many millions of lives each year and causes untold suffering. In a new report, released today to mark International day against drug abuse and illicit trafficking, the EU drugs agency (EMCDDA) looks at how far the science of addiction has come and how this knowledge can be used to help tackle the problem.
New psychoactive substances (NPS) have changed the nature of the global drugs market. The UK has taken the opportunity of its one-year presidency of the G8 to lead on tackling the threat of NPS. Published today is the G8’s statement of intent on collecting and sharing data in this area.
Leading European and international specialists will meet in Lisbon from 27–28 June to take stock of the global new drugs phenomenon. The Third international multidisciplinary forum on new drugs, organised by the EU drugs agency (EMCDDA), in cooperation with Europol, will gather over 100 participants from some 40 countries.
The EU drugs agency (EMCDDA) and the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) will open their doors to the public this Thursday 20 June on the occasion of the inauguration of Praça Europa, the square on which the agencies are located in Lisbon’s Cais do Sodré area.