NEWS

More drug addicts seeking treatment, report says

PENNY BOULOUTZA

TAGS: Health, Survey

Experts say there has been a rise in the number of drug addicts seeking treatment, as well as a drop in the number of drugs-related deaths in Greece.

According to a report by the Greek Documentation and Monitoring Center for Drugs (EKTEPN) that was presented Tuesday in Athens, the number of addicts who entered a rehab program increased from 4,087 in 2015 to 4,314 in 2016.

According to the same report, a total of 12,279 people, which is estimated to be more than 60 percent of the country’s population suffering from a drug abuse problem, were attending a program in one of Greece’s 109 rehab centers in 2016.

Also in the same year, the number of deaths from drug abuse declined from a reported 88 in 2015 to 73 in 2016.

EKTEPN statistics show that heroin was the most common reported drug of choice among those seeking treatment. However, experts did note an increase in the number of cannabis users seeking treatment. The increase suggests the rising potency of cannabis circulating in Greece, experts said.

Finally, the report shows a steady rise in the average age of drug users seeking treatment. The average age rose from 27-28 before Greece’s financial crisis to 34 today.

“This means that users are more reluctant to seek treatment and they continue to use for more years,” EKTEPN head Manina Terzidou said.

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