UN: Nearly 100 drug users died in Crimea after Russia closed methadone program

Russian law forbids the use of methadone in drug rehabilitation programs
The Moscow Times (Russia)
Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Russian Federal Drug Control Service officers burn bags of synthetic opioid Methadone during an operation in in Simferopol on December 23, 2014The United Nations' AIDS envoy sounded the alarm over an impending health catastrophe in Russia's newly acquired Crimean Peninsula, where nearly 100 recovering heroin addicts have died as a result of Russia's abolishment of a methadone program. "The causes of death, from what we have been hearing, are mainly from suicide and overdose," Michel Kazatchkine said. Prior to Russia's annexation of Crimea in March, 805 people were receiving opioid substitution therapy under Ukrainian rule. (See also: Number of Russians with HIV to reach 1 million by 2016)