France’s health minister, Marisol Touraine, has said trial centres where drug addicts can safely inject their own drugs with sterile needles provided by medical professionals could open before the end of the year in a handful of French cities. “I hope that experimental trials will be announced before the end of the year,” Touraine told French BFM television, adding that a handful of cities were ready to test the new program.
In September 2012, the mayor of Bogotá, Gustavo Petro, launched the first centre for drug addicts in the Bronx, a marginalised city-centre neighbourhood. Called the Medical Care Centre for Dependent Drug Users (Centro de Atención Médica a Drogodependientes - CAMAD), it is staffed by psychiatrists, psychologists, doctors and nurses. The people given care in these centres are in an at-risk situation and socially excluded due to their high levels of drug dependency.