The international conference “Drug related harm reduction: where are we going?”


2021 12 06

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On 1st December international conference “Drug related harm reduction: where are we going?”, co-organized by Drug, Tobacco and Alcohol Department and European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA), was held virtually.

This event was for representatives of low-threshold offices, health care institutions implementing harm reduction programs, policy makers, representatives of the penitentiary sector, non-governmental organizations.

In the plenary session PhD Jane Mounteney (Head of unit Public Health of EMCCDA) provided the overview of harm reduction and drugs in Europe and Jurgita Poskeviciute (Administration director of Coalition of Non-governmental Organizations and Experts “I can live”) presented achievements and challenges of harm reduction in Lithuania.

The rest part of the conference was open to three sessions:

  • “Harm reduction in prisons” in which harm reduction interventions in European prisons, the challenges and opportunities for their application in Lithuania, as well as the experience of the Luxembourg prison in implementing the needle and syringe exchange program were presented;
  • “Alternatives to sanctions and alternative sanctions” in which penalties for the possession of narcotic or psychotropic substances and their alternatives were discussed and Estonian experience on harm reduction as alternative to punishment was presented;
  • “Best practices” in which the challenges of drug consumption rooms management, the provision of drug checking, as well as examples of good practices of harm reduction in Poland were presented.

The conference attracted over 150 participants.