Pubdate: Fri, 13 Nov 1998
Source: Advertiser, The (Australia)
Page: 17
Author: Roslyn Phillips


SA Democrats leader Mike Elliott claims that the Swiss heroin trial
"success" is "beyond dispute" (The Advertiser, 5/11/98).

It seems be has not consulted scientists who are disturbed by the
trial's lack of any control group; the self-reported "drop in crime"
results; the enormous cost per addict, not only of providing heroin
and fully staffed clinics but also food and accommodation close to the
clinics (driving under the influence of heroin is very dangerous); the
high dropout rate from the study; the lack of control and
accountability over the use of other drugs during the trial (80 per
cent of subjects used these);  the failure of any addict to become
drug-free ("enrollment" in an abstinence program means nothing).

Dr Ernst Aeschbach and Dr Francesca Haller are two Swiss experts who
have serious doubts about the claimed success of the Swiss heroin
trial. Australians should be aware that international drug companies
based in Switzerland may have a vested interest in promoting
"prescription" heroin, cannabis, etc. Guess who would profit from the
legal sale of such drugs?  I urge Mr Elliott to seek a second opinion.

Roslyn Phillips, Research Officer, Festival of Light (SA),

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Checked-by: Rich O'Grady