These are the minutes from the 57th meeting of the heads of focal points of the Reitox network which took place in Lisbon on the 29-30 November, 1 December 2017.
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Update on key recent and future policy and institutional developments (Plenary Session II)
· The EMCDDA director provided an update about the activities of the Centre with a special focus on:
- the recent internal organisational changes, aiming at better adapting the internal management to the EMCDDA strategy 2025;
- a project to associate the EMCDDA to 2018 ‘European HIV-Hepatitis Testing Week’. The idea is to pilot next year a campaign in collaboration with the NFPs and the EMCDDA experts, with the objective to target the professionals of all treatment centres among others; and
- the ‘EU4monitoring drugs’ project, a technical cooperation project with/for European Neighbouring countries (East and South Partnership), which will be kicked off in the second half of 2018.
· The BE, CY, FI, LU, EL NFPs gave updates on recent or on-going national changes.
· The EC representative provided an update about:
- The Amendment to the EMCDDA Regulation, which regards the information exchange, EWS and risk assessment procedure on NPS that entered into force on 22 November 2017 and will be applicable from 23 November 2018 onwards. The text clarifies the roles of the different actors and shortens all the deadlines of all steps of the risk assessment process;
- The EMCDDA external evaluation 2018. This will be an inclusive process and the NFPs will be involved. The scope and procedure of the evaluation will be presented at the EMCDDA Management Board meeting in December 2017 and will last one year.
- NFPs will be informed and associated to the preparation and implementation of the campaign to support the European testing week.
- The representative from the EC will share a PPT presentation with detailed information about new Regulation (to be uploaded on the Reitox Extranet).
- The Centre will keep the NFPs informed about their involvement in the EMCDDA external evaluation in 2018.
Reitox network Development Framework (Plenary Session III)
· The draft RDF was presented by members of the JWG, thoroughly discussed by the HNFPs and adopted by the HNFPs after the incorporation of some changes. It was clarified that the RDF is not a contractual document but its importance was recognised by the HNFPs. It was highlighted that the MB representatives should be associated to help finding solutions to the challenges that the respective NFPs will face to implement the RDF.
· The document will be presented by the Director at the next MB meeting in December for endorsement. Assuming that the MB will endorse the document, the next phase will be focusing on the implementation of the strategic objectives through various activities listed in the roadmap.
- It was agreed that it is very important to focus on the implementation of the document and that there will be a yearly assessment of the implementation of the Roadmap 2020 until the final assessment in spring 2021.
- The Centre will consider sending a letter to the national stakeholders (other than MB representatives) about the recent changes and about the importance to support the implementation of the RDF;
- The Technical Meeting scheduled on 20 March 2018 will focus on the Roadmap 2020 and on the definition of the first priority activities to be implemented in 2018–2019;
- Assessment of the progress in the implementation of the Roadmap 2020 will be included in the RTX HFPs meetings agendas when relevant.
Reporting Package: Debriefing of 2017 Reporting and preparation of 2018 (Plenary Session IV)
· Annual national data reporting 2017: some information is still missing in Fonte and for the workbooks, reminders were sent to the NFPs.
· Revised workbooks, ST10, ST12,TDI: few comments on the revised tools were shared by the NFPs. Comments for slight modification on the drug policy workbook, harms and harm reduction workbook, ST12 and ST10 were made during the meeting. These will be considered after the meeting and where possible adjustments will be made. So the integration of the SQ into the WBs and ST was adopted for SQ23/29, SQ27 (1&2) and SQ32. For SQ 25 and 26 it was agreed to keep them for the time being;
· The outcomes of the Rapid information Requests(RIR) 2017 were presented. For some of the topics listed, NFPs will be further associated. RIR will continue to be a screening tool to assess the availability and interest to provide data on topics of possible relevance.
· Guidelinesfor 2018 national reporting were adopted and will be uploaded on the Reitox Extranet.
NFPs were informed that the IAS audit reporton ‘management of data collection, validation and quality assurance’, received early October, recognises the importance of the Reitox network in ensuring an on-going dialogue with experts and data providers and acknowledges efforts made by the Agency in order to ensure a timely delivery of high quality information by the network and that addressed two recommendations to the EMCDDA: 1) necessity to have a business requirements analysis for the IT support of the data management process and 2) to expand the data quality management framework to cover all areas of data collection. An action plan to address these recommendations will be presented to the MB in December.
- NFPs were required to submit the remaining data by 15/12 and to reply as soon as possible to the pending requests for clarification in Fonte;
- The Centre will upload the final guidelines for national reporting 2018;
- NFPs aware of business needs analysis, that were carried out in their institutions are welcome to share the information with EMCDDA.
CDR (Plenary Session V)
· CDR confirmed as a great product but NFPs would like to have more space for national customisation (national features in highlights, priorities) for the future. Information only respecting the mandate of the EMCDDA weakens the relevance of the CDR, particularly in countries with a broader addictions policy.
· For 2018, the concern of the NFPs regarding the final validation of the texts and a better planned consultation period was taken into account. NFPs will be given the CDR for final check before their publication. EMCDDA will explore the possibilities for the national customisation of the CDR.
- The Centre will consider the creation of a working group with NFPs representatives for the customisation of the CDR and will come back to the NFPs on this issue early 2018.
- NFPs who are planning to translate the CDR should inform the EMCDDA within one week after the minutes are received, to be included in the early CDR batches (to receive the CDR earlier).
Update of EMCDDA activities: Drug markets, crime and supply reduction (Plenary Session VI)
· Drugs and darknet markets–EMCDDA-Europol publication: The report was presented and discussed. It was mentioned that the report is very innovative and will be interesting to continue to monitor the drug-online markets.
· Reference Group (RG): Reference group members should remain the same and will continue to meet once a year. It was clarified that the reference group members provide national updates, these are not replacing the workbooks, this is an informal input, reflecting personal views, aiming at preparing the Reference group meeting.
· Supply indicators–New supply monitoring concept: The new drug supply monitoring concept paper was presented. EMCDDA starts exploring drug-related homicide and EMCDDA welcomes ideas from NFPs regarding the conceptualisation of drug-related violence.
· Drug Markets report 2019:NFPs will be consulted on the topics that they think important to be included in the next EU Drug markets report.
- Darknet report: EMCCDA to provide NFPs a standard PPT on the report and will also share the two 2 methodological papers.
- The concept paper on the new drug-supply monitoring will be shared with the NFPs.
- The drug-related violence to be included in agenda of the next HFPs meeting.
- NFPs will be consulted early 2018 regarding their suggestions for the Drug markets report 2019.
- The Reference Group National Updates will be shared with the NFPs.
Update of EMCDDA activities: Health-related issues (Plenary Session VII)
· Key Indicators meetings: the main achievements and the priorities for the future improvements for each indicator have been presented.
· European Response Guide: EMCDDA recognises that to reach the target audience of professionals, a translation of the report into national languages would be an added value. The report will be translated in Polish by the Polish NFP.
· Universal Prevention Curriculum (UPC) and exchange database: UPCis a formal training curriculum, specifically dedicated to prevention (9-week) based on the UNODC standards of evidence and contains elements from the EDPQS. ‘UPC adapt’ is preparing a short version (also online version) for EU prevention decision and opinion makers. The project is carried out in 9 countries (ES, IT, CZ, DE, BE, ET, PL, SI, HR) and is bound to have a first pilot curriculum ready by the end of 2017. NFPs could be the future implementers of national academies from 2019 onwards. As a short term action, NFPs have shown an interest to link UPC with a future general Reitox academy in 2018 to be held in Czech Republic.
Exchange database: EDDRA is only kept for consultation purposes, no new entries are accepted. The level 3 entries of EDDRA will migrate to Xchange database (registry of evidence-based programmes). Any new information on evaluated prevention project that NFPs would like to share with the EMCDDA should be sent to a specific email. The new proposed entries will be evaluatednext October 2018.
Update on the drug policy evaluation support and 7 step evaluation guide: A new EMCDDA resource webpage dedicated to policy evaluation is now available, it links to national strategies and their evaluations. Ideas are being considered for providing more targeted support to the countries. EMCDDA already responded to five countries requests but execution depends on the availability of resources and the context of the request (stage of policy development or evaluation).
- Centre will look at availability of resources for translation eventually of the policy impact briefings.
- NFPs who would like to share information on new evidence-based prevention projects should use the following email:firstname.lastname@example.org
· NFPs and Research Projects
Regarding the Research workbook, a recent change brought it under the responsibility of Claudia Storti (instead of Maria Moreira). Information on EU funded research projects (Justice programme, Internal security fund, horizon 2020) and on ongoing calls for proposals were also provided. It was suggested to NFPs to liaise with their Horizon 2020 national contact to get more information on possible opportunities for participation in calls. NFPs look forward to share more information, experiences with research projects, and increase future collaborations (possibly preparing consortium creation). NFPs interested to work together on future potential research project submission could also use the HFPs meeting to do so.
- EC FP to share more information on EU research projects with NFPs when available.
- Follow-up the idea to work on a scientific article on the Reitox network.
· Responses Guide–Supporting successful implementation
The session focused on the chapter 5 of the Responses guide, e.g. on activities to support successful implementation of evidence-based interventions. Many suggestions for further dissemination of the guide and to support the NFPs in promoting and implementing best practices activities were exchanged.
- A technical meeting will be convened in 2018.
Several bilateral meetings were organised: on European Questionnaire on drug use in Prisons, Prevention. There will be action points agreed directly with each of the NFPs involved.
RTX network – Accreditation (Plenary Session VIII)
· Accreditation: 6 NFPs piloted the self-assessment questionnaire (AT, BE, EL, HR, CY, NL) and gave their feedback during the RTX technical meeting in October and during the HFPs meeting. The experience showed that the questionnaire is comprehensive and a useful tool but quite complex to be used with external partners; a shorter questionnaire could be developed if needed in the future. The questionnaire is a starting point of the accreditation process and the final format of the outcome still needs to be further defined (accreditation result). The final self-assessment questionnaire and outputs tools were adopted.
- The NFPs are invited to start implementing the self-assessment questionnaire in 2018 and to liaise with the Centre.
- The Centre will further work on the accreditation final steps.
Cross-cooperation projects (Plenary Session IX)
· The HNFPs were informed about the main features of the new EMCDDA International cooperation framework updating the 2007 International Cooperation Strategy that the Director will submit to the Management Board for approval in December 2017;
· Reitox Academies: The results of the survey among NFPs on the Reitox academies future needs were presented. There is general agreement that the next Reitox academy (whole RTX network) could be on Prevention – UPC (see also Plenary VII). Topics for other potential Reitox academies at national level or regional ones were also discussed.
· EU research projects: a feedback from the parallel session was given.
Other cooperation: The CZ HFP launched a call for volunteers among NFPs who are able to provide prison datasets (following EQDP or any other similar survey questionnaire) to pilot a case level data analysis. Further information on this possible future horizontal project will follow early 2018.
- EMCDDA to announce in due time the future dates and topics of Reitox academies 2018.
Reitox meetings in 2018
HNFPs were kindly asked to save the dates below for the two HNFPs meetings and Technical meetings to be organised in 2018:
- 58thReitox meeting of the Heads of Focal Points: 22–24 May 2018;
- 59thReitox meeting of the Heads of Focal Points and 7thExtended Reitox network meeting: 12–15 November 2018.
- Technical meetings: 20 March and 2 October