April 2003

Addiction needs medical attention, not legal


Improved harm-- reduction services for drug addicts could significantly reduce the costs associated with the treatment of HIV/AIDs, say researchers at St. Paul's Hospital.

Lifetime medical costs for an HIV-infected injection drug user are estimated at about $150,000, they said. Health problems related to addiction account for approximately 15% of admissions to St. Paul's.

Online poker addiction--a losing hand


More than half of Canadians think playing Internet poker for cash is unacceptable, a new Decima poll suggests. Fifty- six per cent were against such a pastime, one-quarter had no problem with it, and the rest fell somewhere in the middle.

The poll, one of the most detailed snapshots to emerge of gambling attitudes, suggests great unease about online casinos. It also reveals a spike in public concern about addiction and lax regulation in regions where video lottery terminals are widespread.