Harm Reduction Measures

"In 2003, the Council of the European Union recommended a number of policies and interventions to the EU Member States to tackle health-related harm associated with drug dependence (26). In a follow-up report in 2007, the Commission of the European Communities confirmed that the prevention and reduction of drug-related harm is a public health objective in all countries (27). National drug policies have been increasingly covering the harm-reduction objectives defined in the EU drugs strategy, and there is now broad agreement among countries on the importance of reducing the spread of infectious diseases and overdose-related morbidity and mortality and other harms.
"During the past two decades, harm-reduction policies have promoted the adoption of evidence-based approaches and helped to remove barriers to service access. One result has been a significant increase in the number of drug users that are in contact with health services and undergoing treatment in Europe. Harm-reduction interventions for drug users now exist in all EU Member States, and while some are just starting to develop services, most can report high levels of provision and coverage."


European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction, "Annual report 2012: the state of the drugs problem in Europe" (Luxembourg: Publications Office of the European Union, November 2012), Catalog No. TDAC12001ENC, doi:10.2810/64775, p. 33.