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Sande M, Šabić S.
“The importance of drug checking outside the context of nightlife in Slovenia”.
Harm Reduct J. 2018 Jan 13;15(1):2.
The main purpose of the research was to evaluate the implementation of the drug checking service in Slovenia and to obtain the opinion of users included in harm reduction programmes for high-risk drug users and of drug users in nightlife settings on drug checking, the reasons for drug checking, and their attitude towards adulterants in the drugs that they use.
The two final unrepresentative research samples included 102 respondents from harm reduction programmes and 554 respondents from the online sample. The questionnaire was designed based on analysis of the interviews conducted with professionals from the programmes, who took part in the drug checking project, and based on previous research on drug use in nightlife.
The main findings related to users' opinions on the drug checking service are that users from both samples perceive drug checking as a contribution to risk reduction and that they find providing information for them about the harmful adulterants and substances that they use very important. In addition, users from both samples considered accessibility of the drug checking service as very important and would be in favour of brief counselling at the collection of the drug sample. One of the salient differences between samples was that nightlife drug users found it more important to recognise substances in the drugs that they use.
Drug users from two different samples attach a relatively high importance to the drug checking service, and they consider it to be a contribution to risk reduction. As well as drug users in nightlife settings, high-risk drug users also perceive the drug checking service to be important, which is relevant in the phase of planning drug checking services outside the context of nightlife and for the act of incorporating these services into contemporary harm reduction policy.
Drug adulterants; Drug checking; Early Warning System; Evaluation; Harm reduction; Injecting drug users; NPS
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