Leonid Vlasenko has a background in psychiatry with more than 30 years of experience in providing professional help to those suffering from any form of addiction. He has worked as a medical doctor in the area of detoxification and psychological therapy, as well as a Deputy Chief Medical Doctor at the regional drug treatment centre. In 2002, via the IREX exchange program, he spent four months at the Baron Edmond de Rothschild Chemical Dependency Institute, New York City. Since then he has taken an active role in promoting harm reduction in the processes of medical treatment and reducing harms related to injecting drug use. Leonid is the author and co-author of numerous publications and research studies on narcology. During the last 10 years, he has been actively involved in cooperation with national and international NGOs turning harm reduction strategy into public health care practice, as well as into drug policy reform.
I firmly believe that if all organizations and activists from different countries promoting the ideas of humanism and sharing the philosophy of harm reduction are united, this will create possibilities for addressing the situation more effectively in respect of availability of medical treatment and prevention of drug addiction based on scientific research, as well as leading to more balanced drug policy.