4 March 2021, Online Consultation on initiation of the Survey in Kazakhstan on High-Risk Drug Use took place via Zoom Teleconference Platform.
More than 25 representatives of governmental, non-governmental stakeholders in the Republic of Kazakhstan and international organizations, including the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Interior, Republican Mental Health Centre, Kazakh National Centre of Dermatology and Infectious Diseases, Law Enforcement Academy of the General Prosecutor’s Office, non-governmental organizations, research institutions, Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, WHO, UNAIDS and UNODC converged around a virtual table to discuss the concept of the survey.
The webinar was officially opened by Mr. Nikolay Negay, Director of the Republican Mental Health Centre under the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Mr. John Dudley, Head of INL, US Embassy in Nur-Sultan and Mr. Naweed Riaz, Head of UNODC Programme Office in Kazakhstan.
As part of the webinar, Mr. Kamran Niaz, Epidemiologist of Drug Research Section at Research and Trend Analysis Branch of UNODC Vienna, presented the experience of other countries with drug use surveys. In his turn, Mr. Nikolay Negay, the Director of the Republican Mental Health Centre, presented on drug-use-related situation in Kazakhstan and current tendencies. In particular, in his presentation Mr. Negay mentioned that during 2016-2020 number of people with NPS dependency have increased 60-fold.
Ms. Gulnur Bolyspayeva, UNODC National Programme Officer, presented the concept, plan and timeframes of the high-risk drug survey. During the discussion, parties also agreed on the objectives, functions and composition of the National Coordination Group that would comprise senior representatives of the relevant national and international stakeholders and provide the overall policy support and guidance for the implementation of the survey.
The survey results are expected to identify the extent, type, patterns, and trends of high-risk drug use with its related social and health problems at selected localities and at national level to inform policies and programmes in cooperation with relevant national and international stakeholders to further address drug demand reduction efforts in the country.
The consultation was held as part of Sub-programme 3: Drug prevention, treatment and reintegration and HIV prevention of the UNODC Programme for Central Asia for 2015-2021 with financial support from U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs.