In addition to new trends the Report on the drug situation 2000 also covers key issue chapters on drug strategies, cocaine and crack cocaine as well as infectious diseases.
The number of opiate users in Austria, i.e. between 15,000 and 20,000 persons, has remained stable. Multiple drug use (simultaneous use of several different substances) has still been very common, and – at least in Vienna – in addition to heroin, tablets containing morphine and cocaine have gained in importance. In line with international developments, drug help facilities operating close to the “drug scene” have registered a decline in young first consumers, while the number of “older” clients is increasing.
Although high-risk consumption patterns have been found in a number of cases, the situation regarding health consequences has generally remained stable. There were 174 drug-related deaths in 1999, which is slightly higher than the corresponding figure for 1998 (162 cases) and considerably lower than in the mid 1990s (1994: 250 casualties). The HIV infection rate of less than five percent is very low also compared to other European countries. On the other hand hepatitis B and C infections are found very often, and this has led to discussions and various forms of intervention in the field of health policy ...
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