Drug Policy and the Public Good

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Overview

Drug use represents a significant burden to public health through disease, disability and social problems, and policy makers are becoming increasingly interested in how to develop evidence-based drug policy. It is therefore crucial to strengthen the links between addiction science and drug policy. Drug Policy and the Public Good is collaboratively written by an international group of career scientists to provide an analytical basis on which to build relevant global drug policies, and to inform policy makers who have direct responsibility for public health and social welfare.

Drug Policy and the Public Good presents, in a comprehensive, practical, and readily accessible form, the accumulated scientific knowledge on illicit drugs that has direct relevance to the development of drug policy on local, national, and international levels. The authors describe the conceptual basis for a rational drug policy and present new epidemiological data on the global dimensions of drug misuse. The core of the book is a critical review of the cumulative scientific evidence in five general areas of drug policy: primary prevention programs in schools and other settings; supply reduction approaches, including drug interdiction and legal enforcement; treatment interventions and harm reduction approaches; criminal sanctions and decriminalization; and control of the legal market through prescription drug regimes. The final chapters discuss the current state of drug policy in different parts of the in different parts of the world, and describe the need for a new approach to drug policy that is evidence-based, realistic, and co-ordinated.

The authors describe the conceptual basis for a rational drug policy and present new epidemiological data on the global dimensions of drug misuse. The core of the book is a critical review of the cumulative scientific evidence in five general areas of drug policy: primary prevention programs in schools and other settings; supply reduction approaches, including drug interdiction and legal enforcement; treatment interventions and harm reduction approaches; criminal sanctions and decriminalization; and control of the legal market through prescription drug regimes. The final chapters discuss the current state of drug policy in different parts of the world, and describe the need for a new approach to drug policy that is evidence-based, realistic, and co-ordinated.

By locating drug policy primarily within the realm of public health, this book draws attention to the growing tendency of governments, both national and local, to consider illegal psychoactive substances as a major determinant of ill health, and to organize societal responses accordingly. It will appeal to those involved in both addiction science and drug policy, as well as those in the wider fields of public health, health policy, epidemiology, primary prevention, and treatment services.

A companion volume published by Oxford University Press, Alcohol: no ordinary commodity - research and public policy, is also available.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199557127
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 2/22/2010
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 368
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Thomas Babor is a Professor and Chairman in the Department of Community Medicine and Health Care, University of Connecticut School of Medicine. He holds the University's Physicians Health Service endowed chair in Public Health and Community Medicine. Dr. Babor received his doctoral degree in social psychology from the University of Arizona in 1971. He spent several years in postdoctoral research training in social psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, and subsequently served as head of social science research at McLean Hospital's Alcohol and Drug Abuse Research Center in Belmont, Massachusetts. Since 1997 he has been chairman of the Department of Community Medicine and Health Care at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine. He is Associate Editor-in-Chief as well as Regional Editor of the international journal, Addiction. His research interests include screening, diagnosis, early intervention, and treatment evaluation, as well as cultural and policy issues to alcohol and drug problems.

Jonathan P. Caulkins is Professor of Operations Research and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University's Qatar campus in Doha and its Heinz School of Public Policy. He currently holds a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Investigator Award in Health Policy Research. Dr. Caulkins specializes in mathematical modeling and systems analysis with a particular focus on social policy systems pertaining to drugs, crime, terror, violence, and prevention. Other interests include software quality, optimal control, airline operations, and personnel performance evaluation. At RAND he has been a consultant, visiting scientist, co-director of RAND's Drug Policy Research Center (1994 - 1996), and founding director of RAND's Pittsburgh office (1999-2001). Dr. Caulkins received a B.S., and M.S. in Systems Science from Washington University, an S.M. in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and Ph.D., in Operations Research both from M.I.T.
Griffith Edwards qualified in medicine and subsequently specialised in the study and treatment of substance misuse. Holder of Jellinek award (International Alcohol Research prize) and Nathan Eddy Award (International Drugs Research prize). Distinguished Fellow of the Society for the Study of Addiction. Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences.

Benedikt Fischer, Professor and CIHR/PHAC Chair in Applied Public Health, Centre for Applied Research in Mental Health and Addictions (CARMHA), Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, Canada.

David Foxcroft is a Chartered Psychologist specializing in Prevention Science. His major research interest is in the prevention of drug and alcohol misuse, especially in young people. David graduated from Hull University in 1990 with a BSc (Hons) in Psychology, and in 1993 with a PhD in Health Psychology. He subsequently held posts at the Universities of Portsmouth and Southampton before coming to Oxford Brookes in 1999.

Keith Humphreys, Professor of Psychiatry at Stanford University School of Medicine, received his doctorate in clinical/community psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana, and his practice license from the State of California Board of Psychology. He currently directs the Veterans Affairs Program Evaluation and Resource Center, which studies treatments and self-help programs for substance abuse and psychiatric disorders. In addition to his scientific projects, he is actively involved in teaching addiction treatment methods to medical students, psychiatric residents, and clinical psychology interns. Professor Humphreys has published more than one hundred scientific articles, has received national and international awards for his work, and has been a consultant to science and human service agencies in the United States, Spain, Bulgaria, Iraq, Ireland, Canada, and South Africa.

Isidore Obot is Professor of Psychology at the University of Uyo, Nigeria, and Director, at the Centre for Research and Information on Substance Abuse (CRISA). Before his appointment in Uyo in 2008, he was Professor and Chair in the Department of Behavioral Health Sciences at Morgan State University School of Public Health, worked as a scientist in the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse at the World Health Organization, Geneva, for five years, and as a lecturer at the University of Jos, for seventeen years. Prof. Obot is a graduate of Howard University, Washington, DC where he received his doctorate degree in psychology, and the Harvard School of Public Health. He has also held post-doctoral positions at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and the Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health.

J├╝rgen Rehm has been working in the area of substance use for over a decade and is Co-Head of the Public Health and Regulatory Policy section at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto, Canada. He also holds a Chair position in Addiction Policy, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, and is Director of the WHO Collaboration Centre on Substance Abuse at Zurich. Dr Rehm was awarded with the Jellinek Memorial Fund Award for outstanding contributions to the advancement of knowledge on alcohol/alcoholism: exemplary research contributions of fundamental importance in alcohol epidemiology and for international leadership in the applications of state-of-the-art methods in population studies in 2003.

Peter Reuter is an economist who has been studying illegal markets and drug policy for over twenty years. He is the founding president of the International Society for the Study of Drug Policy and author of four other scholarly books.

Robin Room is an Australian sociologist who worked for many years in alcohol and drug studies in the U.S., Canada, Norway and Sweden. Since 2006, he has been a Professor in the School of Population Health of the University of Melbourne and the Director of the AER Centre for Alcohol Policy Research at Turning Point Alcohol and Drug Centre. He has worked on social, cultural and epidemiological studies of alcohol, drugs and gambling behaviour and problems, and studies of social responses to alcohol and drug problems and of the effects of policy changes.

Ingeborg Rossow is research director at the Norwegian Institute for Alcohol and Drug Research.

Professor John Strang is a leading Addictions clinician and academic, with 30 years' experience in various aspects of the diverse addictions treatment field. He is Director of the National Addiction Centre (NAC) covering both the academic work of the Addiction Research Unit at the Institute of Psychiatry and also the clinical services for people seeking help with drug or alcohol problems across South London and more widely. In addiction to his academic interest (with more than 300 addictions publications), he has been a consultant psychiatrist in the addictions for 26 years and has extensive experience as a lead clinician in charge of a wide range of treatments in community and residential settings. He has good working links with a range of non-statutory residential treatment providers of care and rehabilitation, including Clouds house (12-Step) and Phoenix Futures (Therapeutic community).

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Table of Contents

Terms and phrases printed in bold are defined in the glossary at the end of the book

Contributors xi

Section I Introduction

1 Framing the issues 3

2 Matters of substance 13

Section II Drug epidemiology and drug markets

3 The international dimensions of drug use 27

4 Harms associated with illicit drug use 47

5 Illegal markets: the economics of drug distribution and social harm 63

6 The legal market: prescription and diversion of psychopharmaceuticals 81

Section III The evidence base for drug policy: research on strategies and interventions

7 Strategies and interventions to reduce drug use and related harm: section overview 97

8 Preventing illicit drug use by young people 105

9 Health and social services for drug users 123

10 Supply control 139

11 Criminalization and decriminalization of drug use or possession 163

12 Prescription regimes and other measures to control misuse of psychopharmaceuticals 179

Section IV Drug policy and system issues at the national and international levels

13 Drug policy and control at the international level 203

14 The variety of national drug policies 221

15 Health and social services for drug users: systems issues 235

Section V Synthesis and conclusions

16 Summary and conclusions 251

Appendix 261

References 271

Glossary 325

Index 331

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