Turkey Country Drug Report 2019

Drug use and responses in prison

In 2017, there were 386 penal institutions in Turkey. Around 2 in 10 prisoners were sentenced for drug law offences; the proportion of drug law offenders among all prisoners has been on the rise in recent years. No data on drug use among prisoners are available in the country.

Drug treatment in prisons is managed by the Ministry of Health, following treatment guidelines and in accordance with the law. Family doctors are required to provide mobile/temporary healthcare services.

Psychosocial support services provided in penal institutions are aimed at protecting and promoting the physical and mental health of both prisoners and staff. A project for the rehabilitation of prisoners with mental health problems and drug dependency in Turkish prisons has been implemented, with the objectives of ensuring that prisoners with mental health problems receive proper assessment and diagnosis; developing and implementing effective intervention programmes; creating a supportive environment for mental health; protecting the mental health of staff; and increasing employee awareness of mental health.

Drug treatment in Turkish prisons focuses on motivational interventions, information awareness and the management of withdrawal symptoms through relaxation techniques.

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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.