This, the sixth booklet of the World Drug Report 2020, addresses a number of drug policy issues that all form part of the international debate on the drug problem and how to address it. Although comprehensive data and analysis may not be available for some of these issues, the following chapters represent a first attempt to consolidate available evidence aimed at supporting the international community in implementing several operational recommendations, including those contained in the outcome document of the special session of the General Assembly, held in 2016.
The booklet starts by considering the issue of ensuring the availability of and access to controlled substances exclusively for medical and scientific purposes while preventing their diversion. It thus reviews the latest data on and trends in the availability of controlled medicines, specifically opioids, for medical consumption at the global level and across regions. An overview is also provided of the latest survey findings on barriers to access to controlled medicines for medical purposes in Member States.