Bergen hospital to hand out heroin to small number of hardened addicts

Dec. 18, 2013 at 8:54 AM   |   0 comments

BERGEN, Norway, Dec. 18 (UPI) -- Hospital officials in Bergen, Norway, said they plan on giving out heroin to addicts in an effort to reduce overdoses and health complications.

"The solution has been tested in several large cities in Europe, such as Amsterdam and Zurich. We intend to have the same general approach," Ola Josendal, the director of addiction medicine at Haukeland University Hospital, said.

Josendal announced the decision to start the pilot program at a Bergen city council meeting Tuesday, reported.

The hospital will set up an injection room next to the emergency department by September, he said.

"Really heavily addicted users have no desire to stop using opiates, and will continue anyway," Josendal said. "This consumption can be made much safer."

The drug will be made available to small number of patients who do not respond to other treatments.

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