global Opioid crisis

Opioids Seized Worldwide, according to the United Nations' 2019 World Drug Report UNODC
The United Nations' Office on Drugs and Crime's (UNODC) annual drug anthology, published today, reports that drug use and dependency is rising around the world. Cannabis continues to be the most widely used drug worldwide.

"Globally, some 35 million people, up from an earlier estimate of 30.5 million, suffer from drug use disorders and require treatment services. The death toll is also higher: 585,000 people died as a result of drug use in 2017. Prevention and treatment continue to fall far short of needs in many parts of the world. This is particularly true in prisons, where those incarcerated are especially vulnerable to drug use and face higher risks of HIV and hepatitis C transmission," states the report.

According Yury Fedotov, Executive Director United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, "Synthetic opioids continue to pose a serious threat to health, with overdose deaths rising in North America and trafficking in fentanyl and its analogues expanding in Europe and elsewhere. The opioid crisis that has featured in far fewer headlines but that requires equally urgent international attention is the non-medical use of the painkiller tramadol, particularly in Africa. The amount of tramadol seized globally reached a record 125 tons in 2017; the limited data available indicate that the tramadol being used for non-medical purposes in Africa is being illicitly manufactured in South Asia and trafficked to the region, as well as to parts of the Middle East.

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