Recreational drug users in Durban, South Africa, are stealing HIV medications from positive people, crushing them and mixing them with marijuana to get high, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reports (

People who take the antiretroviral drug Stocrin have told authorities they’ve been attacked en route back from the hospital, while other HIV-positive people have had the drugs stolen from their homes.

Durban health officials told the AFP that recreational use of Stocrin may cause shortages of the drug in city hospitals and health centers.

“The practice is disturbing,” said health department spokesperson Leon Mbangwa. “A large number of HIV patients depend on the state sponsored treatment to stay healthy.”

AFP reports that combining Stocrin and marijuana can damage the immune system and be potentially fatal to those using the mixture for recreational purposes.