New heroin-assisted treatment

Series type: Insights


The prescription of substitution drugs, such as methadone and buprenorphine, has become a mainstream, first-line treatment for opioid dependence, with around 700 000 of Europe’s 1.3 million problem opioid users receiving substitution treatment today. But a small minority of entrenched opioid users repeatedly fails to respond to interventions of this kind. Findings from international trials now suggest that the supervised use of medicinal heroin can be an effective second-line treatment for this small, and previously unresponsive, group. In this latest EMCDDA Insights report, experts describe the development as ‘an important clinical step forward’. The report provides the first state-of-the-art overview of research on the subject, examining the latest evidence and clinical experience in this area in Europe and beyond.

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Table of contents

  • Foreword
  • Acknowledgements
  • Executive summary
  • Chapter 1: Introduction to this EMCDDA Insights
  • Chapter 2: Development of supervised
    injectable heroin treatment in Europe and beyond
  • Chapter 3: Scientific evidence base for supervised
    injectable heroin treatment
  • Chapter 4: Economic evaluation of supervised
    injectable heroin treatment
  • Chapter 5: Pharmaceutical diacetylmorphine products
  • Chapter 6: Implementation and clinical practice of supervised injectable heroin treatment in Europe and beyond
  • Chapter 7: Conclusions
  • Bibliography
  • Glossary
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