Injection Drug Use in Georgia
"There are approximately 40,000 people who inject drugs in Georgia, but only 4,000 of them are covered by harm reduction services. OST [Opiate Substitution Treatment] and NSPs [Needle and Syringe Programs] are largely funded through Global Fund; they cover only a few regions and at best cover up to 10% of people in need78. The state budget of Georgia allocates just $700,000 for treatment programs for people who use drugs at the same time that $10.5 million per year is spent enforcing rigid drug criminalization policies (as noted previously in this report). The skewed priorities are extremely costly from a public health and budget perspective, as criminalizing people instead of supporting them in effective drug treatment not only costs more money but increases health risks."
Merkinaite, S. "A war against people who use drugs: the costs" (Eurasian Harm Reduction Network (EHRN): Vilnius, Lithuania, 2012), p. 25.