The appearance of new psychoactive substances generates a serious problem at national and European level as well. To provide an answer to these problems the European Union set up and applies a three-step approach. The elements of the approach are: information exchange, risk assessment and decision-making. The three steps are defined by the Council Decision 2005/387/JHA. The first element of the three-step approach is information exchange that is realised via the Early Warning System (EWS). The primary aim of EWS is to detect and disseminate information on new drugs and new patterns of drug use at European level
The operation of the European system is supplemented and accompanied by similar national systems set up by the member states. The coordination of EWS is the responsibility of the EMCDDA at European level, and the Reitox national focal point at national level. In the realisation of the information exchange at national level the relevant state institutions, authorities, professional organisations, service providers and NGOs are also involved. The task of the Hungarian National Focal Point is the promotion of information dissemination that includes: forwarding European information to Hungarian stakeholders, collecting and forwarding information available in Hungary to the European network and facilitating information exchange at national level on new psychoactive substances.