In Colombia, the problem against trafficking and consumption of illegal drugs did not stop even with the Covid-19 pandemic and the strict quarantine that the country experienced for more than three months.
Since 1920, the marketing and consumption of cocaine, heroin and laudanum has been prohibited in the country. However, since the 60's the country experienced the hippie movement with an increase in marijuana consumption.
In the last decade, the consumption of synthetic drugs has been growing in large proportions, to the point that it has not been possible to calculate exact figures.
Colombia has had a drug consumption proportional to its development, but it is one of the countries that invest less in prevention and attention to consumption (3%) and more in interdiction (95%), according to Ruta Futuro, this government's anti-drug policy.
"For having the cheapest drugs in the world and so little investment in prevention, it is a miracle that the problem is not more serious," said Julian Quintero, director of the corporation Acción Técnica Social, to the national newspaper El Tiempo.
During the pandemic, the process of purchasing substances accelerated. According to a survey conducted by the Corporación Acción Técnica Social and its project Échele Cabeza, during the third week of the quarantine, about 12% of the transactions were paid through virtual applications and 27% of the people received their drugs through delivery and home delivery companies.
According to the Colombian Ministry of Justice, "the consumption of psychoactive substances in the country is a critical problem, not only because of the systematic increase indicated by available studies, but also because its characteristics make it a complex issue with serious repercussions on public health and social issues; the consumption of illicit drugs is growing in the country not only because more people consume them but also because the market for substances is increasingly broad and diverse".
To exemplify what is happening in the country, in Cartagena de Indias recently seven young people, among them a minor, are in the Intensive Care Unit for the exacerbated consumption of a new synthetic drug in the form of pink powder that is being marketed in the city.
According to information provided by the Health Department, at least 30 other young people in different parts of Cartagena have consumed the substance.