SUMMARY OF CHANGES
One new group has been created at the broad group level. Six new narrow groups have been included in the Second Edition, and one narrow group previously included in the first edition of the ASCDC has been removed. Four base level categories that existed in the first edition have been moved to different narrow groups. Thirty-two new base level categories have been created, and one base level category has been expanded to include a drug formerly included in a 'not elsewhere classified' category.
These changes are detailed below:
- Cannabinoids and Related Drugs Broad Group
Narrow Group 32 'Cannabinoids' has been removed from Broad Group 3 'Stimulants and Hallucinogens' and a new Broad Group 7 'Cannabinoids and Related Drugs' has been created. Many users indicated that Cannabinoids did not fit well in the 'Stimulants and Hallucinogens' group. Given this, it was decided that the classification would be best served by the creation of a new broad group, Broad Group 7, 'Cannabinoids and Related Drugs' for these drugs. This new broad group will also allow for the inclusion of new base level categories for 'Cannabinoid' extracted from the plants (code 7101) and for synthesised 'Cannabinoid agonists' (7102), which stakeholders requested to have separately identified as the molecular similarity does not fit perfectly within any other base level unit.
- GHB Type Drugs and Analogues
The 'GHB Type Drugs and Analogues' narrow group was created to reflect the rise in prevalence of a number of drugs that are similar to gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB) in action and composition that were not separately identified in the first edition of ASCDC. Stakeholder feedback indicated that use of drugs of this type is widespread enough to warrant the creation of a new narrow group. In the first edition of ASCDC, GHB type drugs were included in Narrow Group 22, 'Anaesthetics'.
While 'Cathinone' and 'Methcathinone' were identified as separate base level categories in the first edition of ASCDC, stakeholders identified a number of related drugs that were not separately identified. The new narrow group 'Cathinones' groups all of these drugs together. Cathinones were included in Narrow Group 39, 'Other Stimulants and Hallucinogens' in the first edition of ASCDC.
Narrow Group 38, 'Piperazines', represents a category of stimulant whose use as a recreational drug has increased markedly since the publication of the original ASCDC. There was considerable interest from stakeholders in having this category of drug separately identified as a narrow group. No Piperazines were separately identified in the first edition of ASCDC, although conceptually they would have been in Narrow Group 39, 'Other Stimulants and Hallucinogens'.
- Atypical Antipsychotics
Narrow Group 56, 'Atypical Antipsychotics', are a class of antipsychotic medication that had only recently been introduced when the first edition of ASCDC was published. Since then, their prescription has become commonplace and the opportunity for them to be misused and abused has consequently increased. In the first edition of ASCDC, Atypical Antipsychotics were included in the nec category of Narrow Group 59, 'Other Antidepressants and Antipsychotics'.
Movement of existing drugs of concern
Narrow Group 93 'Laxatives', comprises a type of drug that is frequently and increasingly abused, especially by people with eating disorders. The inclusion of 'Laxatives' was seen by stakeholders as a useful adjunct to the existing narrow group 'Diuretics'. Laxatives were not identified as a drug of concern in the first edition of ASCDC.
With the creation of the new broad and narrow groups, several base level categories have been moved from existing narrow groups to these new groups. Specifically, 'Gamma-hydroxybutyrate' has moved from 2201 to 2501, 'Cannabinoids' from 3201 to 7101, 'Cathinone' from 3902 to 3701, and 'Methcathinone' from 3904 to 3702.
New drugs of concern
Due to the increasing incidence of their misuse and abuse and consequent need to individually identify them in statistics, the following base level categories have been included in the Second Edition ASCDC:
Inclusion of Psilocin with Psilocybin
|2599||GHB Type Drugs and Analogues, nec|
|5699||Atypical Antipsychotics, nec|
|7199||Cannabinoids and Related Drugs, nec|
Psilocybin and Psilocin are two closely related tryptamines. The two drugs are most commonly found in hallucinogenic mushrooms, and the two can exist within the same mushroom. Stakeholder feedback has indicated that in most cases, a clinician would be unable to determine if a patient was affected by psilocybin or psilocin. Therefore 'Psilocin' has been moved from 3599 'Tryptamines, nec' and combined with the first edition base level category 3505 'Psilocybin' to form a single base level category of 3505 'Psilocybin or Psilocin'.
A number of stakeholders requested that the classification include a grouping for precursor substances. However, while researching the precursor substances, it became clear that this would not be possible as not all precursor substances are drugs, for example safrole (an oil used in making perfume), and some drugs, such as pseudoephedrine, would need to be included in two categories in the classification. This is not possible as all categories in a classification must be mutually exclusive.
A list of precursors can be found in the Code of Practice for Supply Diversion into Illicit Drug Manufacture
published by The Plastics and Chemicals Industries Association (PACIA) on the website: http://www.pacia.org.au/Content/drugs.aspx
Comparison between ASCDC 2000 and ASCDC 2011
See the changes (including additions and deletions) in the Type of Drug Classification and Additional Classifications
data cube, Table 3 Comparison of the Structure Between 2000 and 2011.
CHANGES TO THE SUPPLEMENTARY CODES
A new broad group and new narrow groups have been added to the main structure of the ASCDC.
New supplementary codes have been created for these groups where appropriate.
The following list of supplementary codes includes the new codes in bold:
|1100||Organic Opiate Analgesics, nfd |
|1200||Semisynthetic Opioid Analgesics, nfd|
|1300||Synthetic Opioid Analgesics, nfd|
|1400||Non Opioid Analgesics, nfd|
|2000||Sedatives and Hypnotics, nfd|
|2500||GHB Type Drugs and Analogues, nfd|
|2900||Other Sedatives and Hypnotics, nfd|
|3000||Stimulants and Hallucinogens, nfd|
|3300||Ephedra Alkaloids, nfd|
|3600||Volatile Nitrates, nfd|
|3900||Other Stimulants and Hallucinogens, nfd|
|4000||Anabolic Agents and Selected Hormones, nfd|
|4100||Anabolic Androgenic Steroids, nfd|
|4200||Beta2 Agonists, nfd|
|4300||Peptide Hormones, Mimetics and Analogues, nfd|
|4900||Other Anabolic Agents and Selected Hormones, nfd|
|5000||Antidepressants and Antipsychotics, nfd |
|5100||Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors, nfd|
|5300||Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors, nfd|
|5500||Tricyclic Antidepressants, nfd|
|5600||Atypical Antipsychotics, nfd|
|5900||Other Antidepressants and Antipsychotics, nfd|
|6000||Volatile Solvents, nfd|
|6100||Aliphatic Hydrocarbons, nfd|
|6200||Aromatic Hydrocarbons, nfd|
|6300||Halogenated Hydrocarbons, nfd|
|6900||Other Volatile Solvents, nfd|
|7100||Cannabinoids and Related Drugs, nfd|
|9000||Miscellaneous Drugs of Concern, nfd|
|9200||Opioid Antagonists, nfd|