World Drug Report 2005

image of World Drug Report 2005

The World Drug Report 2005 provides one of the most comprehensive overviews of illicit drug trends at the international level. In addition, this year it presents the work of UNODC in two new areas of research: an estimate of the financial value of the world drug market, and the preliminary steps towards the creation of an illicit drug index. The analysis of trends, some going back 10 years or more, is presented in Volume 1. Detailed statistics are presented in Volume 2. Taken together these volumes provide the most up to date view of today’s illicit drug situation.

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HIV/AIDS and drugs

Globally, sexual transmission of HIV continues to be the most common way the virus is spread, but drug use is contributing to the pandemic in at least four ways. First, the most common and best-researched method of transmission is via the use of contaminated injection equipment among people who inject drugs. Second, there is sexual transmission of the virus between those who inject drugs and their sexual partners. The dual transmission risk in the case of sex workers who also inject drugs leads to epidemics that expand quickly and act as a bridge to the rest of the population. Third, noninjecting use of drugs such as cocaine and amphetamine- type stimulants leads to high-risk sexual behaviour. And finally, HIV can be transmitted from an infected mother - a commercial sex worker, an injecting drug user and/or a sexual partner of a drug user - to her child. While very little systematic information is available on this particular mode of transmission related to drug use, anecdotal examples suggest that this could be a potential entry point for HIV to get into the general population. For example, during 1996–2001, most of the HIV-infected infants in the Russian Federation were born to mothers who were either injecting drug users or sexual partners of injecting drug users.

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