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Heroin Addiction in Russia(68 images)

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Russia is facing one of the fastest-growing rates of HIV infection in the world, fueled largely by widespread injection drug use. While treatment programs are available, they are often crowded, expensive, or ineffective. Furthermore, methadone, the gold-standard replacement therapy used around the world, is illegal in Russia, complicating efforts to stem these twin epidemics.
  • Valera, a former drug user who is now in a rehabilitation program run by the orthodox church, walks his dog near the organization's live-in retreat in Sapernoe, Russia, on Saturday, September 15, 2007. About a dozen people at a time live and work at the remote farm, about two hours from St. Petersburg, for a free one year course of treatment.
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  • Two patients stand with folded hands during an orthodox church service at a rehabilitation program run by the orthodox church in Sapernoe, Russia, on Saturday, September 15, 2007. About a dozen people at a time live and work at the remote farm, about two hours from St. Petersburg, for a free one year course of treatment.
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  • Men and female sex workers gather at a van operated by the AIDS Center in Kazan, Russia, to receive free condoms and clean needles on Thursday, September 20, 2007. A large percentage of sex workers are involved in the trade to fund drug habits, and consequently fuel the spread of diseases such as HIV and hepatitis.
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  • Two undercover police conduct surveilance near a van operated by the AIDS Center in Kazan, Russia, where sex workers gather to receive free condoms and clean needles on Thursday, September 20, 2007. A large percentage of sex workers are involved in the trade to fund drug habits, and consequently fuel the spread of diseases such as HIV and hepatitis.
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  • A woman walks under a streetlight in Kazan, Russia, on Thursday, September 20, 2007.
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  • Patients in a rehabilitation program for former heroin users run by the NGO Rosa Vetrov smoke cigarettes at the organization's office in Kazan, Russia, on Friday, September 21, 2007. The free three-month program has helped about 400 people in the last 10 years.
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  • People emerge from a tunnel under the street during a rainstorm in Kazan, Russia, on Friday, September 21, 2007.
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  • Alexei, a heroin user for 12 years, prepares to shoot up in the stairwell of his apartment building in Kazan, Russia, on Saturday, September 22, 2007. Alexei's son also uses heroin, but both also volunteer with the local AIDS Center to distribute clean needles and cardiomene, a drug to counteract an overdose.
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  • Alexei, a heroin user for 12 years, prepares to shoot up in the stairwell of his apartment building in Kazan, Russia, on Saturday, September 22, 2007. Alexei's son also uses heroin, but both also volunteer with the local AIDS Center to distribute clean needles and cardiomene, a drug to counteract an overdose.
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  • Alexei, a heroin user for 12 years, shoots up in the stairwell of his apartment building in Kazan, Russia, on Saturday, September 22, 2007. Alexei's son also uses heroin, but both also volunteer with the local AIDS Center to distribute clean needles and cardiomene, a drug to counteract an overdose.
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  • Used needles are trapped between windows in the stairwell of an apartment building in Kazan, Russia, on Saturday, September 22, 2007.
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  • Children play soccer near a center for drug dealing in Kazan, Russia, on Saturday, September 22, 2007.
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  • Vadim Simashov, a heroin user on and off for 14 years, in the stairwell of the apartment he shares with his parents in Kazan, Russia, on Saturday, September 22, 2007.
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  • Vadim Simashov, a heroin user on and off for 14 years, in the stairwell of the apartment he shares with his parents in Kazan, Russia, on Saturday, September 22, 2007.
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  • Patients undergo initial treatment at the rehabilitation program for heroin addiction operated by the NGO City Without Drugs in Yekaterinburg, Russia, on Monday, September 24, 2007. Up to 50 people at a time are crammed into a room, handcuffed to their beds, and fed a diet of only bread and water for an initial period of 27 days to ensure they take the treatment seriously and aren't tempted to quit and try again another time. This is followed by a year of community service. The program, which claims an 80% success rate for those who complete the entire course, costs 6000 rubles per month for food and housing, though the rehabilitation itself is free.
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  • A patient undergoes initial treatment at the rehabilitation program for heroin addiction operated by the NGO City Without Drugs in Yekaterinburg, Russia, on Monday, September 24, 2007. Up to 50 people at a time are crammed into a room, handcuffed to their beds, and fed a diet of only bread and water for an initial period of 27 days to ensure they take the treatment seriously and aren't tempted to quit and try again another time. This is followed by a year of community service. The program, which claims an 80% success rate for those who complete the entire course, costs 6000 rubles per month for food and housing, though the rehabilitation itself is free.
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  • Vadim Simashov, a heroin user on and off for 14 years, with his mother in the apartment he shares with his parents in Kazan, Russia, on Saturday, September 22, 2007.
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