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VOLUME 3, ISSUE 1 - SPRING 2009

In the Journal of Global Drug Policy and Practice, our authors have presented insights that illumine the many aspects of the international drug problem. At this juncture in our world political history, the editors asked for their contributions to a special edition.

Some of our experts, coming from many different fields and representing many different nations, addressed new or re-elected world leaders in our Winter 2009 edition. They each presented a unique perspective on drug treatment, policy or prevention and gave advice about the most critical issues in the drug arena.

This issue focuses on a troubling and increasingly widespread problem – controlling prescription drug abuse. Its complexity requires a more in-depth examination and a longer treatment; hence, the editors decided to include both parts of a two part series in one issue. In our commentary piece, Dr. Robert DuPont reviews the current administration’s approach to medical marijuana.

The Journal of Global Drug Policy and Practice, a joint effort of the Institute on Global Drug Policy and the International Scientific and Medical Forum on Drug Abuse, is an international, open access, peer-reviewed, online journal with the goal of bridging the information gap on drug policy issues between the medical/scientific community, policymakers and the concerned lay public.

Edited by Eric A. Voth, MD, FACP and David A. Gross, MD, DFAPA, our intended readership includes clinicians, clinical researchers, policymakers, prevention specialists and the interested public.

IN THIS ISSUE
A Vital Balancing Act: Multi-Sector
        Approaches to Preventing Prescription Drug
        Abuse in the United States while Ensuring
        Adequate Patient Access to Medications: Part 1

A Vital Balancing Act: Multi-Sector
        Approaches to Preventing Prescription Drug
        Abuse in the United States while Ensuring
        Adequate Patient Access to Medications: Part 2

Barack Obama on Medical Marijuana

UPDATES
Medical Research
International Drug Policy
In the News

A Vital Balancing Act: Multi-Sector Approaches to Preventing Prescription Drug Abuse in the United States while Ensuring Adequate Patient Access to Medications: Part 1
Andrea G. Barthwell, M.D., Michael C. Barnes, Esq., Vera R. Leopold, B.A., Jana L. Wichelecki, B.A.

Prescription drug abuse is an increasing public health concern in the United States. Research shows that many Americans view prescription medications, such as opioid pain relievers, as easier to acquire than illegal drugs and safe to use; meanwhile, studies have documented widespread undertreatment of pain. Due to the complex nature of this problem, the participation of multiple sectors of society – the medical community, state and federal governments, law enforcement, advocacy organizations, and private enterprise – is necessary to adequately address the issue. The Center for Lawful Access and Abuse Deterrence (CLAAD) is an alliance of diverse organizations that aims to develop a balanced approach to preventing prescription drug abuse while simultaneously ensuring sufficient access to medications for patients with a legitimate medical need. This article will describe the consensus recommendations developed by CLAAD. Prescription drug abuse is primarily a public health problem, which must be addressed as such through universal precautionary measures.


A Vital Balancing Act: Multi-Sector Approaches to Preventing Prescription Drug Abuse in the United States while Ensuring Adequate Patient Access to Medications: Part 2
Andrea G. Barthwell, M.D., Michael C. Barnes, Esq., Vera R. Leopold, B.A., Jana L. Wichelecki, B.A.

To begin to solve the dual problem of prescription drug abuse and undertreatment of pain, as well as to address disparities in pain treatment, the medical community must implement universal precautions in prescribing. The adoption of universal precautions for bloodborne pathogens in the late 1980s is a commendable example of the medical community’s successfully implementing a set of universal precautions.


Barack Obama on Medical Marijuana
Robert L. DuPont, M.D.

President Barack Obama is thoughtful and deliberate. During the presidential campaign, he commented on the issue of medical marijuana. The formal policy position of his administration on medical marijuana will be determined over the coming months, after his team is in place at the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP). In the meantime, his words on the campaign trail are instructive.



Medical Research
A Spanish study finds that 66 percent of their patients with psychosis were daily cannabis users More

Scientists have identified a nanoparticle that may hold the key to ‘turning off’ drug addiction More

Genomic locations for alcohol, marijuana, opioids, nicotine and cocaine addictions clustered together More

International Drug Policy
Shining Path returns, funded by cocaine trafficking profits More

New UN guidelines target internet dealers of illicit drugs More

European School Survey Project on Alcohol and Other Drugs (ESPAD) released More

In the News
President Obama says no to legalizing marijuana in town hall meeting More

Secretary of State Clinton sees demand reduction as factor in Mexican cartel wars More

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