Brazil has both an Early Warning System (EWS) and a formal Drug Classification Working Group.
In 2015, the Brazilian National Health Surveillance Authority (ANVISA), created a federal working group, comprised of ministers and specialists from health, forensic, law enforcement, and legal areas, to investigate the emergence of New Psychoactive Substances on a national level. Citing the UNODC’s concerns about the proliferation of these new substances, ANVISA installed this cross-agency group with the goal improving the regulatory model for the classification and control of currently unlisted substances.
In February 2017, the working group published a report, describing its activities, including: meeting quarterly; monitoring international alert systems; reporting to international organizations about Brazil’s classification of new substances; designing generic classification systems of synthetic cannabinoids and cathinones and successfully recommending that they become part of Brazilian law; developing an EWS for ANVISA to implement (which it did) to accelerate the classification of new substances as illicit drugs; and participating in technical meetings with the UNODC and other international organizations.
The working group continues to monitor for new psychoactive substances in Brazil.
On 31 January 2017, ANVISA created an EWS in the form of an Internet portal that allows rapid reporting of new substances from forensic laboratories connected to law enforcement agencies. Based on the information received through this portal, ANVISA can rapidly classify new substances as controlled drugs, thereby giving Brazilian law enforcement jurisdiction to use the criminal justice system to prevent their trade and abuse. Guidelines for forensic professionals on how to interpret unlisted substances by identifying their generic classification are available on ANVISA’s NPS website. These guidelines rely on the recommended methods for identification and analysis of synthetic cannabinoids and cathinones published by the UNODC.