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Article
October 23, 1991

Tracking the Cocaine EpidemicThe Drug Abuse Warning Network

Author Affiliations

From the Office of National Drug Control Policy, Washington, DC.

From the Office of National Drug Control Policy, Washington, DC.

JAMA. 1991;266(16):2272-2273. doi:10.1001/jama.1991.03470160104041
Abstract

POLICYMAKING in the fight against drug abuse should be driven by accurate epidemiologic data. By providing information on patterns and consequences of use and demographics of users, such data can show trends over time and the effectiveness of existing strategies.

None of the existing datasets are flawless, as might be expected for information on illegal activities in a variety of populations. Thus, absolute numbers are less important than what the indexes show when looked at as a whole over prolonged periods.

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