In order to give continuity and accomplishing the agreed agenda and work plan elaborated in Bogota (Colombia) it took place the capacity building workshop on EWS in the frame of the2nd Annual meeting of National Drug Observatories.
The main objectives of the workshop were defined at the Bogota meeting by the working Group as follows:
Based on the definition of an Early Warning System (EWS) and the main sources of information agreed in Bogota, the presentation by the designated expert, and its corresponding discussion, of the first draft manual based on the creation and operation of an EWS type model. The proposal includes "supporting the countries in the design and implementation of Early Warning Systems: stakeholder identification, structuring of the system, definition of routes and protocols, promoting processes of chemical characterization of new psychoactive substances and drugs defined as relevant in national contexts, as part of the EWSs."
Studying the feasibility of forming a Regional Network of EWSs for a rapid exchange of alerts and information and constant methodological support.
In addition, the coordinating team, together with the COPOLAD task force defined the inclusion of the following contents;
The presentation of best practices by supranational bodies (EMCDDA and UNODC)
Presentation by Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Czech Republic and Uruguay of paradigmatic cases in the activity of their EWS.
Commitment of countries in the future.
Associated operational objectives
0.1 - Establish the necessary operational bases to ensure the quality and coherence of the work to be performed and the necessary coordination and participation of all partners.
0.2 - Have adequate baseline information to: provide specificity to the contents and the actions planned in each component; meet initial expectations of each partner in relation to its participation in COPOLAD; and facilitate the programme evaluation.
0.4 - Establish the necessary institutional contacts to avoid duplication with already developed initiatives and ensure synergies with ongoing initiatives, both within the EU and CELAC.
1.1 - Study and assess changes from C1 on the existing needs, to define specific final contents of foreseen activities under Component 1; adjusting them to different groups of countries, in order to establish and/or reinforce the role of National Drugs Observatories in CELAC countries
1.2 - Promote the establishment of sustainable information-sharing agreements between NAs, NDOs and other stakeholders in CELAC countries, which can provide key information to assess threats and deal effectively with the new psychoactive drugs.
Overall, the workshop was evaluated as satisfactory by participants, finding a good level of agreement on the main aspects and reiterating the importance of countries having an Early Warning System. It was also generally approved what was presented by the consultants, who must submit a final version of the Manual for the next Working Group meeting to be held in July 2018 in Uruguay.
Promoted the establishment in CELAC countries of national EWS, though the onset of sustainable information-sharing agreements between NAs, NDOs and other stakeholders, which can provide key information to assess and deal effectively with the new threats of psychoactive drugs.
The percentage of CELAC participating countries having a national EWS, has increased, at least a 50% (from baseline situation).