Territory Stories

NT drug trends 2005 : findings from the Illicit Drug Reporting System (IDRS)



NT drug trends 2005 : findings from the Illicit Drug Reporting System (IDRS)


Northern Territory drug trends; E-Journals; PublicationNT; NDARC technical report ; no. 243




Made available via the Publications (Legal Deposit) Act 2004 (NT).; This publication contains may contain links to external sites. These external sites may no longer be active.






Drug abuse -- Northern Territory -- Statistics -- Periodicals; Drug abuse -- Northern Territory -- Periodicals; Drug abuse surveys -- Northern Territory -- Periodicals

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National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, University of New South Wales

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NDARC technical report ; no. 243



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3 Information from key experts corroborates data from IDU, but also provides a broader context in which to place the IDU data. A standardised interview schedule is used by all states and territories that closely mirrors the IDU questionnaire. Each KE is asked to nominate the main illicit drug used by most of the illicit drug users they work with and information is then gathered about use, availability, price and purity of that drug category. Further questions are asked about health, treatment, crime and police activity. In Darwin and Palmerston, interviews were conducted with seven key experts during July through October. All interviews were conducted face-to-face. Key experts included: 1 researcher 1 psychiatrist 1 sexual health nurse 6 D&A counsellor/caseworkers 1 coordinator of D&A services 1 needle exchange worker 1 prison treatment intervention worker 1 police officer 1 Opiate Pharmacotherapy Program Medical Officer 1 GP 1 court clinician/diversion officer 1 group at a high school including: o student counsellor o home liaison officer o Aboriginal and Islander Education worker o year 8 coordinator o assistant principal o senior teach o pastoral care worker Seven key experts provided information chiefly about morphine, two about methamphetamine, seven about cannabis and one about methadone. Interviews took between 40 minutes and 90 minutes. Notes were taken at the time of interview and later transcribed and analysed for recurring themes. 2.3 Other indicators The third set of information comprises secondary data sources that relate to illicit drug use. Recommended criteria for inclusion in the study are that the data must be available at least annually, include 50 or more cases, be collected in the city or jurisdiction of the study, provide brief details on illicit drug use, and must include details of the four main illicit drugs under investigation (Hando et al, 1998). Due to the small population of the NT, many of the data sources available to other states and territories report very small numbers regarding the NT and fail to meet the above criteria. Where no other secondary sources are available, some findings from such data sources are noted, but should be interpreted with caution. Data are presented for a time period that overlaps as closely as possible with the period of the IDRS, but where this is not available the most recent data available are included.

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