Drug use and addiction care

Drug use can have an adverse effect on users and on public health. The government seeks to prevent people using drugs. If people nonetheless become addicted, addiction care is available. For those who are unable to kick their habit, measures are in place to limit the damage to their health.

Drug prevention in schools

Preventing drug use begins at school. After alcohol, cannabis has the most serious adverse effect on young people's health and development. In schools:

  • information officers provide information about drug use;
  • social workers identify young people who are using drugs and provide rapid assistance.

Addiction care

Help is available for drug users who become addicted. This may take various forms:

  • counselling and treatment at an institution;
  • admission to an institution.

Treatment at an institution may include:

  • help with kicking the habit;
  • regulating consumption;
  • preventing damage to health.

Inpatient treatment in an institution may include:

  • crisis intervention;
  • detoxification and physical treatment (in clinics);
  • psychiatric care.

Limiting health damage

Some people may be unable to stop using drugs. In these cases, treatment is geared towards minimising the damage to the addict's physical and mental health. This treatment may include:

  • encouraging drug users to exchange used syringes for new, sterile ones, free of charge. This reduces the risk of HIV and hepatitis B and C infections;
  • providing severely addicted persons with methadone or heroin;
  • providing special rooms for users.