Professor of Public Health Policy and Practice
areas of expertise
Marie Claire Van Hout is Professor of Public Health Policy and Practice at the Public Health Institute, Liverpool John Moore’s University, United Kingdom. She has over 17 years research, education, community development and clinical practice experience in various fields of public health and drug policy and practice, and concentrated in the area of prescribed and illicit substance use, misuse and dependence, HIV/HCV prevention, treatment, care and support in Europe and Sub Saharan Africa, performance and image enhancement, and Travellers and Gypsy health. Her international reputation as a recognised leader in her field of has led to a number of significant honorary appointments and collaborations. These include; Associate Member of Staff at the Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drug Abuse Research Unit of the South African Medical Research Council, South Africa since 2010; Visiting Research Fellow at Department of Health, Psychology and Social Care, Glyndŵr University, UK since 2012; Visiting Research Fellow at the Public Health Institute, Liverpool John Moore’s University, UK 2014-2017; Visiting Professor at the Centre for Research and Studies in Sociology, University Institute of Lisbon (CIES-IUL) and Visiting Professor at the Institute for Drug and Alcohol Studies (IDAS) at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU), USA since 2016. She has consulted for the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (ENCDDA) (2012), and the European Research Executive Agency (REA). She has been Editor in Chief of the ‘Journal of Ethnicity in Substance Abuse’ at Taylor and Francis since 2014. Marie Claire is currently part of the supervisory team for two of our PhD students, Jennifer Brizell and Charlotte McLean, who are undertaking research into the female use of enhancement drugs.
Professor Marie Claire Van Hout's Papers
A scoping review of home-produced heroin and amphetamine-type stimulant substitutes: implications for prevention, treatment, and policy
Harm Reduction Journal 13:14, 2016.
Abstract: Several home-produced substances such as krokodil and boltushka are prevalent in many Eastern European countries. Anecdotal reports of its use have been circulating in Germany and Norway; however, this has not been confirmed. Its use has also been reported by the media in the USA, although only one confirmed report of its use exists. Home-produced drugs are associated with high levels of morbidity and a number of complex health issues such as the spread of blood borne viruses, gangrene, and internal organ damage. The high incidence of HIV rates amongst people who inject home-produced substances is a public health concern. The resulting physical health consequences of injecting these crude substances are very severe in comparison to heroin or amphetamine acquired in black markets. Due to this fact and the increased mortality associated with these substances, professionals in the area of prevention, treatment, and policy development need to be cognisant of the presentation, harms, and the dangers associated with home-produced substances globally. This scoping review aimed to examine existing literature on the subject of home-produced heroin and amphetamine-type stimulant substitutes. The review discussed the many implications such research may have in the areas of policy and practice. Data were gathered through the use of qualitative secondary resources such as journal articles, reports, reviews, case studies, and media reports. The home production of these substances relies on the utilisation of precursor drugs such as less potent stimulants, tranquillizers, analgesics, and sedatives or natural plant ingredients. The Internet underpins the facilitation of this practice as recipes, and diverted pharmaceutical sales are available widely online, and currently, ease of access to the Internet is evident worldwide. This review highlights the necessity of prevention, education, and also harm reduction related to home-produced drugs and also recommends consistent monitoring of online drug fora, online drug marketplaces, and unregulated pharmacies.
2,4-Dinitrophenol, the inferno drug: a netnographic study of user experiences in the quest for leanness
Journal of Substance Use, 2016.
Abstract: Background: Despite not being licensed for human consumption, the internet has triggered renewed, widespread interest and availability of 2,4-Dinitrophenol (DNP). DNP, a cellular metabolic poison causes thermogenesis resulting in fat burning and weight loss. Whilst extensively available for purchase online, research on user experiences of DNP is limited. Methods: A netnographic approach was used to describe user experiences of DNP via online public websites. Public websites discussing DNP were identified and a purposeful sample selected. Discussion threads were downloaded and a textual qualitative analysis conducted. Four themes containing 71 categories were generated. Results: There exists a plethora of communal folk pharmacological advice and recommendations for DNP manufacture and use, together with associated harms and outcomes. The efficacy and untoward effects of DNP were described and discussed alongside the notion that DNP should only be used by experienced bodybuilders. Dosage and regimes for optimal use were also described. Conclusion: This unique study provides a rich examination of the knowledge, attitudes and motivations of DNP users, illustrating the significant role of online public websites in sharing information. Further understanding of DNP users and the online communities in which they reside is warranted to facilitate engagement and formulate appropriate and effective policy responses.