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Comparison of legislative management for new psychoactive substances control among Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan


Comparison of legislative management for new psychoactive substances control among Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan



Kaohsiung journal of medical sciences 36(2): 135-142



ISSN/ISBN: 1607-551X

PMID: 31643137

DOI: 10.1002/kjm2.12140

For decades, the three United Nations drug conventions have served as the basis for member states' obligations and international cooperation on drug control. However, the emergence of new psychoactive substances (NPSs) poses a new risk to public health and a challenge to drug policy because of their unknown toxicological effects and easy modification of chemical structures to shun legal control. So far, there is no international consensus on legislative control of NPSs. Therefore, we compared the legislative management on NPS control among Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan. Drug-related information was obtained from the authorities of these three countries. The results indicate that despite geographic proximity and similar legal attitudes toward illegal drug use, the legislative criteria, and responses for NPS control in these three countries were quite different. Ketamine has been the major used NPS in Taiwan but seldom found in South Korea and Japan. The difference in the number of controlled NPSs in Taiwan (91) and South Korea (245) might be due to the implementation of temporary designation systems and analog controls in South Korea. The recent surge of newly controlled NPSs in Japan was because of the promulgation of designated drug regulation and subsequent control of "dangerous drugs." Although NPS use has become a potential social and medical problem among these three countries, the outcomes of NPS legislation control remain to be scrutinized. To minimize harm from NPS use, development of legislative mechanism(s) on NPS scheduling is the first step for early identification and control of NPS problems.

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Accession: 069445545

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