Journal article

Changes in patterns of drug injection concurrent with a sustained reduction in the availability of heroin in Australia

L Topp, C Day, L Degenhardt

Drug and Alcohol Dependence | ELSEVIER IRELAND LTD | Published : 2003

Abstract

Between 1996 and 2000, heroin was the drug most frequently injected in Australia, and viable heroin markets existed in six of Australia's eight jurisdictions. In 2001, there was a dramatic and sustained reduction in the availability of heroin that was accompanied by a substantial increase in its price, and a 14% decline in the average purity of seizures analysed by forensic laboratories. The shortage of heroin constitutes a unique natural experiment within which to examine the impact of supply reduction. This paper reviews one important correlate of the shortage, namely changes in patterns of illicit drug injection. A number of studies have consistently suggested that between 2000 and 2001, ..

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