Crack cocaine use in a rural county of England

Vivancos, Roberto, Maskrey, Vivienne L., Rumball, Daphne, Harvey, Ian and Holland, Richard (2006) Crack cocaine use in a rural county of England. Journal of Public Health, 28 (2). pp. 96-103. ISSN 1741-3850

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Crack/cocaine use is an increasing problem in the UK. This study is the first to ascertain the magnitude of the crack/cocaine problem in a rural county of the UK and to determine users’ needs for treatment services. A questionnaire on drug dependence and risk behaviour was completed by 306 users of drug treatment services, and focus groups were conducted with 45 self-selected crack/cocaine users. It is estimated that 31% (95% C.I., 26% to 37%) of drug users in treatment services have moderate/severe dependence on crack/cocaine. Factors associated with severe crack/cocaine dependence are severe dependence on benzodiazepines, increasing number of drugs used, engaging in sex work and non-white ethnicity. Those with severe dependence have a higher prevalence of hepatitis B and C compared with those with moderate or no dependence. All focus group participants describe a frenzied drug life so when entering treatment they require additional support to give structure to their lives to prevent relapse. Current service provision appears not to provide help to crack/cocaine users. Given the lack of pharmacological treatment, programmes should incorporate a wide range of activities and interventions to provide structure to clients’ lives. Learning from ex-users was perceived as an important component of treatment.

Item Type: Article
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > Norwich Medical School
UEA Research Groups: Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences > Research Groups > Public Health and Health Services Research (former - to 2023)
Depositing User: EPrints Services
Date Deposited: 25 Nov 2010 11:11
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2023 10:30
DOI: 10.1093/pubmed/fdl010

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