In the light of changes on the drug market related to the emergence of new designer drugs there were no institutional and legal mechanisms in the united Europe to rapidly control these substances and keep up with the latest ideas of clan lab chemists.
In 1997, in response to the situation, by virtue of the Joint Action on New Synthetic Drugs, the Council of the European Union established the Early Warning System.
The Lisbon-based European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction was made the main responsible body for implementing and development of the EWS. The EMCDDA was established by the European Commission to monitor the situation of drug addiction in EU Member States.
In the beginning major stress was placed on bringing new drugs under legal control. In 2000, the notorious PMA (Para-methoxyamphetamine) and PMMA (para-methoxyamphetamine) emerged on the illegal market. In that year UFO or red Mitsubishi tablets (most commonly called) caused a series of deaths. Following those events a rapid transfer of information gained even more importance and the system became, somewhat additionally (apart from legal regulations), a platform of information exchange on various drug-related threats to public health and human life as well as profiles of drug user populations.
The growing popularity of ecstasy, poly drug use and developing experimenting trends among drug users are contributing to new trends on the drug scene. Collecting information on new drugs and trends improves our knowledge and helps to effectively implement prevention activities.
Please find attached the publication: “New Psychoactive Substances – problem and response” that presents the NPS phenomenon in Poland over the previous years.