Norway Country Drug Report 2019

Quality assurance

The current National Action Plan for the Alcohol and Drugs Field specifies the following quality assurance-related objectives: (i) increase the expertise on drug and drug dependence problems in all sectors; (ii) establish a separate national quality register within the interdisciplinary specialised treatment of substance use problems; (iii) increase expertise and establish fixed procedures relating to the exposure and monitoring of drug problems in the municipalities and somatic hospital wards; and (iv) increase competence among municipal healthcare services.

The Ministry of Health and Care Services is responsible for overall alcohol and drug policy, and for coordinating governmental efforts to combat substance use problems. The Directorate of Health is responsible for making guidelines/instructions for relevant healthcare and social services. The primary objective of the regional competence centres in the alcohol and drugs field is to assist municipalities in the development of drug prevention expertise/competence in their region, whereas the national competence service for interdisciplinary specialised treatment is responsible for building up and disseminating expertise in interdisciplinary specialised treatment for substance abuse problems. The Norwegian Institute of Public Health is responsible for producing, summarising and communicating knowledge to contribute to good public health and healthcare services.

Although there is no specific education system to prepare professionals for working in the area of drug demand reduction, universities offer a number of educational programmes that target employees of services dealing with drug problems. A specialised course in drugs and drug dependence medicine for physicians was implemented in 2017. The regional competence centres in the alcohol and drugs field, as well as the national competence service for interdisciplinary specialised treatment for substance use problems, offer training in the form of various courses and seminars or conferences.

Norway main page

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.