Gender differences and gender identities in drug use, addiction and interventions: why gender matters
The structured session aims to discuss the relevance of including a gender perspective in drug research and public health interventions. Drug use and interventions to reduce drug-related harms have often been approached through a gender neutral lens, although drug use and drug-related outcomes are highly differentiated by gender in: numbers, risk factors, behaviours, consequences of drug use and requested interventions. A discussion around recent developments in the gender theory and how this can be used in the analysis of drug use research can inform drug policy for implementing appropriate and evidence-based interventions. The session will be organised around six short (10’) presentations (if necessary to be reduced to five) focusing on the following aspects related to gender and drugs: -the first presentation will provide the theoretical framework for a better understanding of the drug issue using a gender perspective; -the second presentation will focus on the gender differences in drug use from a social perspective; -the third presentation will discuss the complexity of gender differences from the neuroscience perspective; -the fourth presentation will show data of a gender inclusive analysis on drug use, with a focus on the drug using profile of non-binary persons; -the fifth presentation will describe the importance of considering an intersectional approach in drug use research that considers the intersection of gender with other relevant social dimensions, such as race, socio-economic status, among others; -the final presentation will discuss the highlights from a 2022 handbook for policy makers and practitioners for the integration of the gender dimension on drug policy and practice.