Live chat: Peter Dunne and synthetic cannabis

Last updated 10:37 16/04/2014

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Global Drug Survey

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Synthetic cannabis puts more New Zealanders in hospital per use than any other drug and experts say it is a ''timebomb'' that will strain the public health system for years to come.

Results from this year's Global Drug Survey, conducted in partnership with Fairfax Media, found almost 4 per cent of synthetic cannabis users sought emergency medical treatment. More than a quarter of those were admitted to hospital.

The survey of 5731 New Zealand respondents found more than 10 per cent had used synthetic cannabis in the past 12 months - second only to Britain, on just under 11 per cent.

Today Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne, who helped bring the Psychoactive Substances Act into law last year, joined us to discuss the findings and implications.

Most recently he has said a complete ban could not work, due to the changing chemical formulas behind the variants, and would only send the problems underground.

If you missed the chat you can replay it here.

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