DS Daily - 19th November 2010


ACMD Response to Drug Strategy Consultation 2010

The consultation has several substantial questions that, for a detailed and thoroughly considered response, could have discussions and meetings devoted to themselves. Therefore, bearing in mind the relatively short consultation period the ACMD’s response is not a systematic review, but evidence that has been provided at the time [Home Office, UK]

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Sussex heroin warning after overdose increase

An overdose warning has been issued by police about a batch of poor quality heroin being sold on the streets [The Argus, UK]

Benefits for addicts 'should not be withdrawn'

Withdrawing welfare benefits from addicts who refuse treatment is not a good idea, the Government's drugs advisers said today [Independent, UK]

David Cameron – you're undoing the 'big society' we were making

The voluntary sector could provide the growling engines of the 'big society'. Yet coalition cuts are wrecking its infrastructure [Guardian, UK]

Drugs project launched in Stirling

Weekend revellers will be warned about the perils of drug abuse when a high-profile safety campaign rolls into in Stirling [Stirling Observer, UK]

Watch presentations from the first LJWG conference on Hepatitis C

Themed around 'Hepatitis C, Substance Misuse and Health Inequalities', the conference featured presentations from many respected figures from across the sector. Videos, and powerpoint slides, from some of those presentations
are now available [Addaction, UK]

User Views of Punishment: The Comparative Experience of Short Prison Sentences and Community-based Punishments

Report comparing short-term prison sentences and community-based punishments, including findings that offenders serving short prison sentences commonly experience serious drug and/or alcohol problems [The Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research, UK]

NI Health Minister Says Costs For Treating Drugs And Alcohol Top £7 Million

On 1 March 2010 over 5,550 individuals across Northern Ireland were in treatment for alcohol and/or drug misuse [eGov Monitor, UK]

Ministers urged to cut VAT in pubs

The call comes from Dr Nick Sheron, one of the UK's leading experts in alcohol-related harm. Writing in the British Medical Journal, he recommends a cut in VAT on alcohol sold in pubs from the incoming rate of 20% to 12%. Doing so would help tackle below-cost selling of drink by supermarkets, which has been linked to antisocial behaviour and health problems [Guardian, UK]

Alcohol Effects and NHS Drinking De-commissioned!

The DH are currently de-commissioning the NHS Drinking site at www.nhs.uk/drinking In future alcohol information can be accessed on the Change4Life site www.nhs.uk/change4life [Alcohol Learning Centre, UK]

MP slams supermarket alcohol prices

Liberal Democrat Greg Mulholland said the big four grocers were pushing "irresponsible promotions" on well-known spirits and liqueurs to tempt shoppers [Press Associatiion]

Alcohol chiefs advising on public health policy is 'naïve', says Diane Abbott

High profile Labour MP Diane Abbott has branded a government plan to take advice from the drinks and food industry on public health policy as “naïve” and “desperate” [The Publican, UK]

Smoking and its consequences

Studies probe quitting, relapse and lung disease [Aidsmap, UK]

Recession causing surge in drug and alcohol abuse

The recession is becoming an increasingly common issue in the consultation room, month by month, as the long-term effects of the recession deepen, Dr Ronan Boland, Chair of the IMO GP Committee has told [Irish Medical Times]

Funding crisis could finish drug education group

Community Awareness of Drugs (CAD), which provides drug education and training programmes for parents and community workers, said it will close its doors next March [Irish Examiner]

Tackling heroin use

Stationed in Ennis since August, Superintendent Peter Duff came to the post having spent the majority of his career in Dublin [The Clare Champion, Ireland]

Children in special care set to double

Focus Ireland, which works with vulnerable young people, said drug abuse is one factor in the growing number of people exhibiting challenging behaviour [Irish Times]

Liberal Dutch marijuana policy taking another hit?

The new conservative Dutch government wants to force the country's marijuana cafes to become "members only" clubs, a move that would effectively block foreigners from buying the drug [Associated Press]

Buprenorphine Implants for Chronic Opiate Dependence

Implants might provide a new avenue for maintenance, but they're not trouble-free [Journal Watch]

FDA Warning Letters issued to four makers of caffeinated alcoholic beverages

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today warned four companies that the caffeine added to their malt alcoholic beverages is an “unsafe food additive” and said that further action, including seizure of their products, is possible under federal law [FDA, USA]

ONDCP Applauds FDA's Action Against Caffeinated Alcoholic Beverages

Director Kerlikowske issued a statement commending FDA's actions against makers of caffeinated alcoholic beverages, saying "these products are designed, branded, and promoted to encourage binge drinking, and I commend the FDA for acting promptly to curb their sale [Of Substance Blog, ONDCP, USA]

The Day After

How’s that no-smoking pledge going? [Addiction Inbox, USA]

Trying to save lives amid relentless drug violence, Mexican medical workers put their own on the line

With alarming frequency, narcotics violence is spilling into hospitals and clinics across Mexico [Washington Post, USA]

AER Foundation welcomes creation of Preventative Health Agency to combat $36 billion annual cost of alcohol misuse

AER Foundation Deputy Chair Scott Wilson said: “We look forward to working with the Preventative Health Agency to tackle the widespread problems caused by alcohol misuse in Australia as part of a comprehensive national preventive health strategy" [AER Foundation Australia]

Officials seize drugs set for Schoolies

A nationwide police operation has seized more than $10 million worth of illegal drugs posted through international mail, some of which were destined for Schoolies Week on the Gold Coast [ABC News, Australia]

Tobacco Industry Inquiry Report: Smokefree Nation 2025

If New Zealand was to become a Smokefree Nation by 2025, an aspiration of the recent historic Maori Affairs Select Committee (MASC) Inquiry’s Report on the tobacco industry and its products impact on Maori, what is the worst that could happen to this country? [Scoop, New Zealand]