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Aspire services




Chemsex Training 

Chemsex training course

14th July 2016
29th September 2016
10th November 2016

Location: St Martin of Tours, 318-320 St Paul’s Road, Islington, London N1 2LF

This one day Chemsex training course will be delivered 3 times this year and aims to give participants the confidence, knowledge and skills in order to deliver effective interventions and support for this subgroup.





Do you work with older people in London affected by family substance use?


Adfam runs a free monthly peer support group, regular info/skills sessions and social trips and activities for older people (55+) in London whose loved ones use drugs or alcohol.


We cover all expenses and provide lunch. Find out more! Contact Rachael Evans:
/0207 553 7640





CPH Steroids Conference


Anabolic Steroids: Evidence and engagement - invitation & call for abstracts for parallel sessions

Wednesday 22nd June 2016, 9.30am – 4pm, Liverpool


This conference will investigate what we know about steroid use, the ways it has been dealt with and the challenges ahead.


Deadline for submission of abstracts is 1st April 2016. Please submit by email here.




Residential care


Find the perfect Residential Service for your client in Phoenix Futures’ new Residential Catalogue

Including female-only service, kennels and a specialist family service.





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UK news

Local Alcohol Profiles for England: hospital admissions indicators, 2016 annual data update

The Local Alcohol Profiles for England (LAPE) data update for May 2016 | PHE, UK

Alcohol consumption has increased in retirees, Government figures reveal

Alcohol-related hospital admissions are falling for younger age groups, but increasing for the over 65s, new figures reveal |, UK

Local tobacco control profiles for England: May 2016 data update

The Local Tobacco Control Profiles for England quarterly data update for May 2016 | PHE, UK

Health Profiles

The profiles are are intended to help local government and health services make plans to improve local people’s health and reduce health inequalities | PHE, UK

Tobacco companies lose EU court appeal over plain packaging rules

The UK, France and Ireland has passed legislation on that will see plain packaging introduced on May 20 | Independent, UK

The impact of the EU Tobacco Products Directive on e-cigarette regulation in the UK (PDF)

In May 2016 the EU’s revised Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) will come into force. This revision included many updates to regulations on tobacco products but also sets out new regulations covering e-cigarettes. The UK Government has made clear that it will not be seeking to ‘gold plate’ the rules coming from the EU and will implement them to create a minimum burden on business | ASH, UK

Housing first helps reduce drinking but not drug use 

Housing first interventions give immediate and stable accommodation for homeless people with mental health and substance use problems. Over 24 months in Canada, housing first contributed to reductions in drinking problems, but did not have an impact on drug use problems | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

Scottish national naloxone programme saved lives after release from prison

In 2011 Scotland became the first country to fund a national policy of distributing the opiate-blocker naloxone to prevent drug-related deaths. A national evaluation found the programme did prevent deaths where the effect was most likely to be seen – in the weeks after release from prison. But why no apparent impact in other circumstances? | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

Frequent attenders to accident and emergency departments: a qualitative study of individuals who repeatedly present with alcohol-related health conditions

The central aim of this study was to provide detailed insights into the characteristics, views and experiences of individuals who repeatedly present to A&E with alcohol-related health conditions in order to optimise the development, implementation and evaluation of interventions for them | Alcohol Research UK, UK

The 3rd national emergency department survey of alcohol identification and intervention activity

This survey followed up on the preceding National Surveys (Patton & O’Hara 2013, Patton et al., 2007) exploring the implementation of alcohol screening activity for adult and adolescent patients, with additional focus on older drinkers and people frequently attending EDs for alcohol-related reasons | Alcohol Research UK, UK

BBC Drugs map of Britain: heroin haters

In the second episode of Drugs Map of Britain, we meet a group of men who use violence to deal with, what they say, is the growing heroin problem in their area. Every week, they collect discarded needles andbelieve those responsible must be punished. But how do they justify their actions and why do heroin addicts, in particular, face so much prejudice and stigma? | BBC iPlayer, UK

14 years undercover as a heroin addict… meet Neil Woods

In the latest Drugs Map of Britain, we meet vigilantes in Manchester who are removing heroin users from their streets with violence | BBC, UK

Electronic Cigarettes

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what data his Department collects on the number of people who use electronic cigarettes | They work for you, UK


To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how much his Department has spent on campaigns promoting the cessation of smoking in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement | They work for you, UK

Better Parked Than Dead

There was a familiar and tragic story in the news on the 14th June 2015, about six heroin-related deaths in Nottinghamshire | Volte Face, UK

Ketamine: Antidepressant chemical identified in 'major breakthrough' for drug development

The substance in ketamine responsible for its antidepressant effects has been identified by scientists. The discovery has the potential to be a "major breakthrough" for drug development, as the chemical has been shown to alleviate depression, with none of the adverse side effects | IBTimes, UK

Alcohol makes you momentarily happier but not more satisfied

Research suggests people are momentarily happier when drinking alcohol -- but that over longer periods, drinking more does not make them more satisfied with life | Science Daily, UK

Human heart cells respond less to e-cig vapour than tobacco smoke

Substantial differences have been observed in the way human heart cells respond to e-cigarette smoke and conventional cigarette smoke. Researchers have investigated how the same type of cells as those found in the arteries of the heart, known as human coronary artery endothelial cells (HCAEC), responded when they were exposed to both e-cigarette aerosol and conventional cigarette smoke | Science Daily, UK

Will Legalising Cannabis Extend Prohibition?

The inexorable momentum towards cannabis legalisation has taken hold across the globe. New, courageous policies are emerging in all corners of the earth – from Uruguay to Canada, from Ireland to Germany, a wave of positive reforms are being passed or pondered over by policymakers | Volte Face, UK

Custody drugs death man Istiak Yusuf searched for 22 seconds

A man who died at Luton police station after taking drugs in his cell was searched for 22 seconds, an inquest has heard | BBC, UK


International news

Cocaine plane shot down - video

A small plane carrying 70kg of cocaine was shot down in a remote part of Peru by drug enforcement agents | BBC, UK

California recreational marijuana initiative will be on the November ballot

Lieutenant governor called the Adult Use of Marijuana Act a ‘game changer’ and an antidote to what he described as the failed and racist war on drugs | Guardian, UK

India cigarettes: Court upholds tough rules on packaging

India's Supreme Court has upheld new federal rules which require tobacco firms to put bigger pictorial health warnings on cigarette packets | BBC, UK

India's Bihar state bans alcohol

Authorities in the eastern Indian state of Bihar have announced a complete ban on the sale and consumption of alcohol | BBC, UK

Speech by Alexis Goosdeel at National Drugs Coordinators’ meeting, Dutch Presidency

EMCDDA Director, Alexis Goosdeel, attended the EU National Drugs Coordinators' meeting on 'Drugs and Nightlife' in Amsterdam, where he presented his views on developing efficient interventions for recreational drug use | EMCDDA, Portugal

Safe Space for Opioid Users Reveals Changing Views on Addiction

A Boston homeless center has started a new program allowing people who use opioids to be in a safe space where they can be supervised after taking the drugs. The program joins a growing number of places which aim to use "harm reduction" strategies -- leading people toward treatment and reducing the risk of overdose -- in the difficult fight against a rapidly growing opioid epidemic | abc news, USA

FDA advisers reconsider training for painkiller prescribers

Federal health advisers are discussing changes to government programs that were intended to improve the safety of painkillers like OxyContin, but which experts say have had an unclear impact | Medical Xpress, USA

Pushing Naltrexone as the Answer to Our Heroin Problems Is Unscientific and Unethical

Recently the neuroscientist Marc Lewis, a friend of mine, gave Percy Menzies, president of treatment provider Assisted Recovery Centers of America, the chance to guest-post on his blog as part of a series on the “response to the heroin epidemic.” Menzies’s post suggested that naltrexone, an opioid antagonist, is a “highly favorable alternative” to opioid addiction | The Influence, USA

Why More People Can't Get Suboxone, The Drug That Might Have Saved Prince

According to a new report in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Prince died one day before a scheduled meeting with nationally renowned opioid treatment expert, Dr. Howard Kornfield | Fast Company, USA

Hepatitis C now leading infectious disease killer in U.S.

The number of hepatitis C-linked deaths in the United States reached a record high in 2014, and the virus now kills more Americans than any other infectious disease, health officials report | Medical Xpress, USA

Introduction to the Special Series on Disparities in the Experience and Treatment of Addiction

Imagine the stress that comes from living in inadequate housing within unsafe communities, struggling to afford food and other basic needs, and being physically isolated from good jobs, transportation, and health care | BASIS, UK

Weighing the pros and cons of mental-health apps

There are more than 165,000 mobile applications available for health care, with the largest category for people with mental-health disorders, managing everything from addiction to depression and schizophrenia. Although in wide use, the efficacy of most of these programs -- software designed for use with a mobile device -- has not undergone rigorous scientific review, say experts | Science Daily, USA

Bountiful Afghan Opium Harvest Yields Profits for the Taliban

It is spring that determines how a year turns out, according to an Afghan proverb. And if the Helmand poppy fields this spring are any indication, the Taliban will have a very good year | NYTimes, USA

California raises legal age to buy tobacco from 18 to 21

California Gov. Jerry Brown on Wednesday approved raising the legal age to buy tobacco for smoking, dipping, chewing and vaping from 18 to 21 | Medical Xpress, USA

Meet the Man Who Ran a Huge Cannabis Factory Next to a Police Helicopter HQ

In 2016, the idea of corporations running large-scale weed-growing operations is a relatively mainstream one. With attitudes relaxing towards cannabis, the plant now being legal in a number of US states and the "green economy" clearly being a very viable way of making big money, it probably won't be all that long until we start to see multinational conglomerates built on buds | VICE, USA

Tax changes to stop the flood of cheap wine

Wine makers have hailed tax changes in last night’s Federal Budget that will go some way towards stopping the flood of cheap wine into the Australian market |, Australia

We can’t win war on ice, says Colin Barnett

Colin Barnett has suggested the war on the drug ice is all but unwinnable, saying its supply into the WA market is “not possible” to stop | West Australian, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Is Alcohol Now the Scourge of Older People and Younger Women?

On 5 May 2016, Public Health England publishes its annual statistics for alcohol related hospital admissions for England. Traditionally the scourge of younger and middle-aged men, we have seen a very different picture from alcohol related deaths, the data for which was published earlier this year | Huffington Post Blog, UK

Searching for solutions: a new brief intervention for comorbid substance misuse in acute psychiatric inpatients

You have to be extremely unwell to be admitted to an acute psychiatric ward as the number of beds shrink year on year. Using substances is one factor that is associated with requiring hospital admission rather than community treatment. As Hermine Graham, the lead author of a recent study points out, admission can be a ‘window of opportunity’ to explore and discuss substance use with the client as a trigger factor that led to hospital admission (Graham et al, 2015) | Mental Elf Blog, UK

Public health resources and tools for teachers

Are you a teacher or a professional working in an education setting? If so, we have a variety of tools and resources available that can be used in training, in the classroom, as part of whole school approaches or simply in work towards improving the health and wellbeing of students | PHE Blog, UK

Harm Reduction at Raves

DanceSafe and The Zendo Project promote drug education and provide a safe space for rave goers | The Fix, USA

African American Agency and (Anti-)Prohibition

It is no secret that African Americans have received modest scholarly attention when it comes to alcohol prohibition. Some historians have gone so far as to omit African Americans from a significant role in the issue altogether | Points: Blog of the alcohol and drugs history society, USA