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Health

SNF DIALOGUES Webcast: Substance Abuse: A Pandemic Within a Pandemic

ATHENS — An SNF DIALOGUES webcast on the worrying implications of a complex phenomenon that seems to be intensifying during the pandemic.

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, health experts have observed troubling signs of a second, growing pandemic: a sharp rise in the use of certain narcotic substances. On Wednesday, April 21 at 18:30 (EET), SNF DIALOGUES, a series of events held through journalism nonprofit iMEdD, will host a discussion on “Substance Abuse: A Pandemic within a Pandemic” and will explore the ways in which isolation and lack of social contact can correlate with substance abuse, as well as other factors that contribute to drug use.

Chemical analysis of sewage in Attica during Greece’s second lockdown revealed an 80% increase above the previous year in the use of cocaine, in addition to a significant increase in the use of anti-anxiety drugs and antidepressants. The World Health Organization and the International Narcotics Control Board have expressed deep concern about the increased use of substances, including alcohol, during the pandemic and the rise in substance abuse by older adults. Who are the people affected by these trends and why do we perennially have difficulty recognizing substance abuse and addiction as problems that touch every part of society?

Experts at the DIALOGUES event will discuss the worrying implications of a complex phenomenon that seems to be intensifying during the pandemic and will ask questions that are too often considered taboo.

The discussion will feature:

• Nikos Thomaidis, Professor Analytical Chemistry. National and Kapodistrian University of Athens

• Gerasimos Papanastasatos, KETHEA (Therapy Center for Dependent Individuals) Research Director

Fred Muench, a clinical psychologist in the U.S. and President of the Partnership to End Addiction, will share an international perspective on substance abuse in the pandemic and addiction issues in general through a video interview.

Send us your questions and join the conversation at snfdialogues.org/questions.

Watch the next live DIALOGUES webcast, “Substance Abuse: A Pandemic within a Pandemic,” and register at snfdialogues.org

The DIALOGUES are curated and moderated by Anna-Kynthia Bousdoukou.

*The opinions expressed by DIALOGUES participants, whether representing officially institutions and organizations or themselves, are solely their own and do not necessarily represent the views of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) or iMEdD. Speakers’ remarks are made freely, without prior guidance or intervention from the team.

Source: snf.org

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