Drug Treatment Largely Unavailable in Russia

"While provisions of the Federal Drug law guarantee state assistance to drug addicts, in fact, budgetary restraints have severely limited the capacity of state institutions to provide even a minimum level of support for drug users. Although the state drug-treatment centres are under the guidance of the Ministry of Health, they are, in fact, financed by the various administrative entities of the Federation. Since most of the oblasts and republics have severe financial restraints, in most cases, the drug-treatment centres have not been able to cope with the sudden expansion in the number of drug users requiring assistance. They lack the financial, material and staff resources to carry out the tasks, which are assigned to them by law. There are a few private treatment centres in some of the major cities, but only the wealthy can make use of their facilities. This general lack of treatment and rehabilitation facilities and activities for drug users are some of the reasons why the country has been facing extreme difficulties in attempting to address the very serious problem of HIV/AIDS infection among injecting drug users."


United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, "County Profile: Russian Federation" (Moscow, Russia: UNODC Regional Office, Russian Federation, 2003) p. 34.