April 1, 2010

The United States and Mexico have issued a joint declaration (PDF, 43.8KB) of cooperation on drug demand reduction efforts that underscores a commitment to reduce illicit drug consumption and the need to work collaboratively with each other and additional partners in the region. The joint declaration was issued at the conclusion of the 8th U.S.–Mexico Bi-National Drug Demand Reduction Policy Meeting, which was held at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, DC, on February 23–25, 2010. National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) Director Dr. Nora D. Volkow and Dr. María Elena Medina Mora, Mexican National Institute of Psychiatry, spoke about scientific advances in a session titled “How Science Has Revolutionized the Understanding of Drug Addiction,” which was moderated by NIDA Deputy Director Dr. Timothy P. Condon. NIDA International Program Director Dr. Steven W. Gust and Dr. Armando Patrón, CONADIC, co-chaired a session on “Collaborative Research Activities in Treatment and Prevention,” which featured presentations by Dr. Betty Tai, Clinical Trials Network, and Dr. Jacqueline Lloyd, Division of Epidemiology, Services and Prevention Research, as well as several NIDA grantees, including Dr. Melanie Domenech Rodríguez, Utah State University, who spoke about adapting a NIDA-supported prevention intervention and implementing it in Mexico.

The declaration emphasizes the importance of both countries in intensifying efforts to prevent and treat substance abuse disorders. The two nations agreed to address six areas of improvement within the next 12 months: developing strong families and communities that resist criminal organizations and promote a culture of lawfulness; providing more and better addiction treatment by integrating it into mainstream medicine; expanding screening, brief intervention, and referral to substance abuse treatment; implementing evidence-based practices; bolstering accreditation and licensing programs; and promoting innovations in criminal justice to reduce recidivism and interrupt the cycle of drug use and crime. Both nations pledged to continue domestic initiatives to reduce the demand for drugs through the United States’ National Drug Control Strategy and Mexico’s Action Program for Prevention and Treatment of Addictions.