Drug addiction is a scourge that not only destroys the individual but affects his family, his community and the country at large.
Ahmad Javid was a promising athlete and university student before he started on drugs. He laments the day his friend introduced him to hashish.
“Before that I never smoked. I didn’t even know how drugs harm your mind and body; not speaking about all the destruction and misfortune,” Javid told Sada-e Azadi magazine.
The Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the international community collaborate in efforts to tackle this menace by introducing harsh measures against drug dealers and helping addicts to stop their reliance on illicit drugs.
The Ministry of Public Health has helped establish a number of rehabilitation centres for drug addicts in major cities across the country.
The newly built 30-bed hospital in Pul-e Khumri specialises in treating addiction and providing psychological and social support to patients. Javid was one of the patients treated at the facility, thanks to his mother who brought him to the hospital.
The centre is manned by dedicated staff that provides round the clock medical care. Dr Mohammad Azim Nabizada, one of the doctors, enumerates illiteracy, ignorance, family problems and unemployment as some of the reasons that cause people into drug addiction. However, there is hope, he said.
“Whatever the reason is, I encourage addicts and their families to ask help from health professionals. In this new hospital, we have 20 employees who take care of the patients all day round,” Dr Nabizada said.
While visiting the new hospital Dr Sorya Dalil, the Minister for Public Health, said, “Everyone should have the right to the health care, including the victims of addiction. I ask mullahs, scholars, teachers and parents to warn our youth about the bad effects of drugs.”