"Swiss likely to approve prescription heroin"

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Rearden Metal, Nov 28, 2008.

  1. http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D94O1B980&show_article=1

    Swiss likely to approve prescription heroin

    GENEVA (AP) - Dr. Daniele Zullino keeps glass bottles full of white powder in a safe in a locked room of his office.
    Patients show up each day to receive their treatment in small doses handed through a small window.

    Then they gather around a table to shoot up, part of a pioneering Swiss program to curb drug abuse by providing addicts a clean, safe place to take heroin produced by a government-approved laboratory.

    The program has been criticized by the United States and the U.N. narcotics board, which said it would fuel drug abuse. But governments as far away as Australia are beginning or considering their own programs modeled on the system, which is credited with reducing crime and improving the health and daily lives of addicts.

    Swiss voters are expected to make the system permanent Sunday in a referendum prompted by a challenge from conservatives.

    The heroin program has won wide support within Switzerland since it was begun 14 years ago to eliminate scenes of large groups of drug users shooting up openly in parks that marred Swiss cities in the 1980s and 1990s.

    Zullino's office, part of the Geneva University Hospitals, is one of 23 such centers in Switzerland.

    Patients among the nearly 1,300 addicts whom other therapies have failed to help take doses carefully measured to satisfy their cravings but not enough to cause a big high. Four at a time inject themselves as a nurse watches.

    In a few minutes most get up and leave. Those who have jobs go back to work.


    Crimes committed by heroin addicts have dropped 60 percent since the program began in 1994, according to the Federal Office of Public Health says.