Heroin: Glasgow

Home Office written question – answered on 22nd June 2018.

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Photo of Jeff Smith Jeff Smith Opposition Whip (Commons)

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, with reference to the letter from his Department to Glasgow City Council published on 4 June 2018 on drug consumption rooms, what steps his Department is taking to protect heroin users in Glasgow against HIV infection.

Photo of Victoria Atkins Victoria Atkins The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department, Minister for Women

Health is a devolved matter, and as such is wholly the responsibility of the Scottish Government.

However, the Government support a range of evidenced-base approaches to reduce the health-related harms associated with drug misuse. For example, availability of injecting equipment through needle and syringe programmes to prevent blood borne infections including HIV.

We have also amended the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001 to permit needle exchange programmes to distribute foil for heroin smoking and we are committed to widening the availability of Naloxone to prevent drug-related deaths.

We also recognise that, for many people who become dependent on heroin, opioid substitution therapy (OST) will be an important part of their pathway to recovery. For those where opioid substitutes have not been effective, Heroin Assisted Treatment (HAT) provides an alternative and effective way of treating individuals.

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