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  • Community groups say they are increasingly worried by a rise in the use of hard drugs such as crack cocaine and crystal meth on the streets of Dublin.

    Posted on January 3rd, 2012 TimB No comments

    Community groups say they are increasingly worried by a rise in the use of hard drugs such as crack cocaine and crystal meth on the streets of Dublin.

    Gary Broderick of the Saol Project said that while many drug treatment programmes had been established to deal with the scourge of heroin, a much broader array of drugs were now in common use. This, in turn, was posing fresh challenges for treatment services.

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  • Difficulty accessing crack pipes and crack pipe sharing among people who use drugs in Vancouver, Canada

    Posted on December 31st, 2011 TimB No comments

    Crack pipe sharing can increase health risks among people who use  drugs, yet the reasons for sharing these pipes have not been well described. Therefore,  we sought to identify the prevalence and correlates of crack pipe sharing among a  community-recruited sample of people who use illicit drugs in Vancouver, a setting  where crack pipes are provided at low or no cost.    The report concludes : There was a high prevalence of crack pipe sharing in a setting where crack  pipes are distributed at low or no cost. Difficulty accessing crack pipes was  independently and positively associated with this behavior. These findings suggest that  additional efforts are needed to discourage crack pipe sharing as well as increase access  to crack pipes.

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  • Steven Levitt analyzes crack economics

    Posted on July 10th, 2011 TimB No comments

    Freakonomics author Steven Levitt presents new data on the finances of drug dealing. Contrary to popular myth, he says, being a street-corner crack dealer isn’t lucrative: It pays below minimum wage. And your boss can kill you.

  • “I inject less as I have easier access to pipes” Injecting, and sharing of crack-smoking materials, decline as safer crack-smoking resources are distributed

    Posted on June 16th, 2011 TimB No comments

    Among injection drug users (IDUs) in Ottawa, the capital of Canada, prevalence rates of HIV (20.6 percent) and hepatitis C HCV (75.8percent) are among the highest in Canada. Recent research evidence suggests the potential for HCV and HIV transmission through the multiperson use of crack-smoking implements. On the basis of this scienti?c evidence, in April 2005, Ottawa’s needle exchange programme (NEP)commenced distributing glass stems, rubber mouthpieces, brass screens, chopsticks, lip balm and chewing gum to reduce the harms associated with smoking crack. This study aims to evaluate the impact of this initiative on a variety of HCV- and HIV-related risk practices.

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  • Crack, Lies and Videotape

    Posted on April 11th, 2011 TimB No comments

    The media and movies like “New Jack City” paint a picture of crack cocaine as a black ghetto drug which is immediately addictive, totally uncontrollable, and leads to an epidemic of crack babies. But is there really any truth to this media hype? Experts Mark Kinzly and Kevin Irwin  dispel the myths about crack and give the real facts without the hype.

  • Public crack cocaine smoking and willingness to use a supervised inhalation facility: Implications for street disorder (Full paper)

    Posted on February 24th, 2011 TimB No comments

    The health risks of crack cocaine smoking in public settings have not been  well described. We sought to identify factors associated with public crack smoking, and assess the potential for a supervised inhalation facility to reduce engagement in this  behavior, in a setting planning to evaluate a medically  supervised crack cocaine  smoking facility.

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  • Smoking of crack cocaine as a risk factor for HIV infection among people who use injection drugs

    Posted on February 8th, 2011 TimB No comments

    People who inject illegal drugs are known to be at heightened risk of HIV infection and other bloodborne diseases. In 2007, more than 20% of all new cases of HIV infection recorded in Canada were attributed to injection drug use. Behaviours associated with the use of particular injection drugs (e.g., cocaine and heroin) have been identified as key factors driving HIV transmission among drug users in various settings.

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  • Crack cocaine seductive, deadly

    Posted on January 29th, 2011 TimB No comments

    Three days into a crack binge, her eyes red and wet and sad, “Lisa” cares little about her rotting thumb.

    Blackened by an embedded glass shard from a chipped pipe and worsened by embers from the frequent lighting process, Lisa doesn’t want medical attention for a lousy finger.

    “I’m an addict,” she deadpans, firing up her next fix. “Hey, I’m honest.”

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  • Crack Cocaine Promotes Progression of HIV

    Posted on January 10th, 2011 TimB No comments

    Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) inflicts disproportionate suffering on drug abusers. They have an extremely high prevalence of infection because the virus transmits easily via shared drug-injection equipment and through drug-influenced risky sexual behavior. They progress to disability and death more rapidly because diagnosis and treatment are often delayed and their lifestyle and circumstances limit their ability to adhere to demanding antiretroviral medication regimens.

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  • Study supports crack kit distribution

    Posted on September 29th, 2010 TimB No comments

    Just as the Vancouver Island Health Authority prepares to roll out its harm reduction strategy in Nanaimo, a new study by a health sciences researcher finds that prevention, treatment and harm reduction programs are lacking in the city.

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