On 25 and 26 March, 15 Georgian experts will attend a two-day workshop in the region of Kakheti on the development of the Georgian national early-warning system (NEWS) on new psychoactive substances (NPS). Staff from the Georgian National Drug Observatory (NDO) will be joined by representatives of the: Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Healthcare, Central Criminal Police Department, Customs Department of the Revenue Service, State Regulation Agency for Medical and Pharmaceutical Activities and Forensic Division of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
The procedures for the collection and rapid reporting of event-based information on the appearance of, and harms caused by, NPS are not yet fully implemented in Georgia. The objective of the workshop is to offer participants a better understanding of the functioning of a NEWS, its different components and partners and its importance for drug policy.
The workshop will be jointly delivered by experts from the EMCDDA and Sciensano, where the Belgian NEWS is located. The training will not only focus on the European requirements for the proper functioning of a NEWS, but also on the operational challenges at national level.
Launched in May 2021, EMCDDA4GE is the first bilateral project between the EMCDDA and Georgia. It aims to enhance national responses to drug-related health and security threats and to familiarise Georgian partners with the EU drug information system and its methodologies and tools. The project focuses primarily on knowledge transfer and capacity-building in the areas of drug monitoring, reporting, prevention and treatment.