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Illicit drug use between an annual key holiday and a control period: Wastewater analysis in a semi-rural, an urban and a vacation area

conference contribution
posted on 2023-05-24, 11:45 authored by Lai, FY, Raimondo BrunoRaimondo Bruno, Hall, W, Gartner, C, Ort, C, Kirkbridge, P, Jeremy PrichardJeremy Prichard, Thai, PK, Carter, S, Mueller, JF
for increased substance use as social events and private parties are more common. Data on community illicit drug consumption during holiday periods are limited. Besides existing methods for determining drug use, such as population surveys, one emerging method is to measure illicit drugs and/or their metabolites in wastewater samples. This study examined the change in consumption of cannabis, methamphetamine, cocaine and 3,4- methylenedioxymethamphetamine in three different types of areas (an inland semi-rural area, a coastal urban area and a vacation island) with respect to holiday times. Design and Methods: Samples were collected at the inlet of the major wastewater treatment plant in each area during a key annual holiday (i.e. the summer holiday including Christmas and New Year) and control period. Illicit drug residues in the daily composited samples were measured by liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry. Results: Drug use varied substantially among the three areas within each monitoring period as well as between the holiday and control period within each area. Use consistently increased and peaked over New Year particularly for cocaine and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine whereas cannabis and methamphetamine were relatively less subjected to holiday times in all the areas. Discussion and Conclusions: Wastewater sampling and analysis provides higher spatio-temporal resolution than national surveys and supplements drug epidemiology studies originating primary in metropolitan locations. Such data is essential for policy makers to plan potential intervention strategies associated with these illicit substances in regional areas and other settings besides urban areas in the future.

History

Publication title

Drug and Alcohol Review

Editors

Robin Room

Pagination

20

ISSN

0959-5236

Department/School

School of Psychological Sciences

Publisher

Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd

Place of publication

United Kingdom

Event title

APSAD 2012 Conference

Event Venue

Melbourne, Victoria

Date of Event (Start Date)

2012-11-18

Date of Event (End Date)

2012-11-21

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Public health (excl. specific population health) not elsewhere classified

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    University Of Tasmania

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