Amendment to the Act on Addictive Substances submitted by Tomáš Vymazal, member of the Czech Parliament, introduces a groundbreaking possibility of providing two addictology services that are not yet available to users of addictive substances in the Czech Republic:
1. Application rooms with medical supervision
2. Substance quality testing within the addictology service.
“The proposal is a breakthrough in Czech drug restriction – the legitimacy of possession of state-banned addictive substances under the current regime of law,” says Jindřich Vobořil, director of the Institute for Rational Drug Policy. “It extends the right to hold such substances to users who intend to apply the dose in a designated controlled place.”
In addition to existing and long-established harm reduction programs providing injecting material exchange or substitution treatment, application rooms could be another alternative that contributes to reducing the side effects of drug use (transmission of infectious diseases or risk of fatal overdose) and also have a clear impact on reducing risky drug applications in public places.
Drug testing can also serve as an immediate intervention tool concerning an individual’s drug use if the drugs tested are found to contain unwanted or unknown chemical compounds. From a professional point of view, testing is a completely justified activity that informs users about a specific substance and the opportunity to reduce the risks of use.
“These steps are in line with the harm reduction approach, which has long proven worldwide to be the only meaningful and effective target for public and legislative drug policy,” says Jindřich Vobořil.