Queue for drug rehab gets longer

The waiting lists for people to join drug rehabilitation programs have increased in the last few years, as changes and the expansion of the state Organization Against Drugs (OKANA) have failed to keep up with rising demand, according to OKANA President Christos Yiannakis. Yiannakis said yesterday that 3,832 people were waiting to be included in the methadone program in October, a figure 14.4 percent higher than in the same month last year. In the 2004-2005 period, OKANA implemented a number of changes to its administrative and economic services and has become more active in the fight to prevent drug abuse, the president added. The organization held more than 6,000 information sessions for school and university students, the armed forces and different community groups across the country in an attempt to prevent the need for its rehabilitation programs. During the two-year period, OKANA began operating three new rehabilitation centers, two in Thessaloniki and one in Athens.