Newsbrief: German Drug Deaths Down, Government Cites Harm Reduction Policies 9/10/04

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The German Ministry of Health and Social Security reported September 2 that drug-related deaths had decreased by 11.6% in the first half of 2004. Some 555 died in Germany from the use of illegal drugs during that period, down from more than 600 during the same period a year earlier.

"The decrease of the drug related deaths is a stable trend going back several years," said the German state secretary for drug issues, Marion Caspers-Merk, in a statement announcing the figures. "This is a confirmation of the drug policy of the federal government, which has persevered in a number of measures to improve the treatment of opiate addicts and to improve their chances to survive," he said.

Germany has been a pioneer in the use of safe injection rooms, opiate substitute treatments, and heroin maintenance therapies.

"The quality of substitution treatment has improved and the legal possibility to open consumption rooms was created," Caspers-Merk added. "Furthermore, the model project for heroin subscription contributes to the positive developments. Nevertheless every death is one death too any. Therefore we need to give more support to harm reduction and treatment of addiction."

(Thanks to Eberhard Schatz for the translation.)

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Issue #353, 9/10/04 They're Back! Two DEA Raids on California Medical Marijuana Operations in Two Weeks | Push for Medical Marijuana Legislation Underway in New Jersey | CRCM Makes Final Court Bid to Get Marijuana Regulation Initiative on Nevada Ballot | DRCNet Book Review: "My Cocaine Museum," by Michael Taussig (2004, University of Chicago Press, 360 pp., $22.50 HB) | Action Alert: Judiciary Committee Taking Up HEA Drug Provision | Newsbrief: Pittsburgh Gives Preliminary Okay to Continuing Needle Exchange Program | Newsbrief: German Drug Deaths Down, Government Cites Harm Reduction Policies | Newsbrief: Initiative Fails to Make Ballot in Arkansas, Another Gets Kicked Off Ballot in Tallahassee | Newsbrief: MPP Sues Minneapolis over Medical Marijuana Ballot Access | Newsbrief: Denver Post Says Legalize It | Newsbrief: Canada's National Post Says Legalize It | Newsbrief: US and Philippines in Joint "Narcoterrorism" Exercises | This Week in History | The Reformer's Calendar
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