Daily news -26th April 2017

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UK news

Alcohol binge can upset heart's rhythm, say researchers

Drinking lots of alcohol in a short space of time will not only get you drunk but may also upset your heart rhythm, say researchers | BBC, UK

Journeys; Men affected by someone else’s drug/alcohol use

Based on true stories from a father, a brother, a grandfather and partners | Adfam, UK

Exposing the global harm caused by the tobacco industry

Today sees the start of a co-ordinated week of action by ASH and our partners to highlight the global harm caused by the tobacco industry | ASH, UK

TIIG Lancashire – Alcohol-related violence across Lancashire April 2013 to March 2016

This TIIG Lancashire report presents data and analyses relating to alcohol-related violence; where data were recorded, alcohol was consumed prior to an assault attendance in 44% of incidents | PHI, UK

MP tells House of Commons that Spice use is reaching 'epidemic levels'

Lucy Powell made a call for the government to tackle the use of the mind-bending drug in following an M.E.N. investigation into its impact in the city | Manchester Evening News, UK

Addiction Journal: The 20 most downloaded papers in 2016

Full access to all papers | Addiction, UK

Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 (Amendment) Order 2017 - Motion to Approve

My Lords, the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 (Amendment) Order 2017 was laid in Parliament on 20 April. I am very grateful to the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs for its very valuable advice. The council’s recommendations have prompted the order before you today | They work for you, UK


To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many prosecutions for possession of synthetic cannabinoids have been commenced since changes in the law relating to synthetic cannabinoids were introduced on 16 December 2016 | They work for you, UK

Drugs: Misuse

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, when the Government's new Drug Strategy will be published | They work for you, UK

Driving under Influence: Drugs

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how long it took to award type approval to drugalysers | They work for you, UK

UK: Tobacco Giant Should Respect Human Rights

British American Tobacco (BAT) should strengthen its processes for identifying and addressing human rights risks in its global supply chain, Human Rights Watch and Swedwatch said today in an open letter to shareholders | Public Now, UK

WIPR survey: IP sector fighting losing battle against plain packaging

The IP sector is fighting a losing battle against plain packaging, according to 93% of readers responding to a WIPR survey | WIPR, UK

What's inside vape juice?

There's more to vaping than water and nicotine: WIRED finds out what goes into e-cigarettes | WIRED, UK

Rise of drug and alcohol fuelled student super-parties in the North-East leads to mass casualty fears

A wave of drug fuelled student North-East super-parties could lead to a "perfect storm" of mass casualties, it has been warned | Northern Echo, UK

A Service of Celebration and Hope – Lives Worth Talking About

On Tuesday 9th May Westminster Abbey will open its doors to 2,000 guests for a service of Celebration and Hope ‘Lives Worth Talking About’  The service is a first in the history of this national institution. To register your interest in attending this event please visit Registration form Deadline on the email, please adjust to 28th April | DrugFam, UK

Addaction Scotland welcomes government funding boost

Addaction - Scotland’s biggest drug/alcohol treatment and recovery charity – has been awarded £47,500 by the Scottish Government | Addation, UK

Funding boost secures support group’s future

A Doncaster-based support group, which provides a lifeline for people coping with a loved one’s alcohol or drug problems, has received a £25,000 funding boost | Aspire, UK

National Alcohol Awareness Day Competition

The MCA runs a biennial competiton in support of the National Alcohol Awareness Day. In the past this has taken the form of different guises, from computer games to posters. We offer three winners and three runner up cash prizes. The competition is open to medical and nursing students | MCA, UK

'As addictive as gardening': how dangerous is video gaming?

Snooker player Neil Robertson blamed a recent drop in form on video game addiction. But was he right to? We speak to the researchers trying to find out | Guardian, UK

Student Lewis Rawlinson 'dealt drugs to fund eye care'

A student who feared he was going blind turned to dealing drugs to pay for private treatment, Exeter Crown Court has heard | BBC, UK

Rhyl Home Bargains car park 'murder over drugs turf war'

A man was murdered and two others were injured in a "vicious" attack over a drugs turf war, a jury has heard | BBC, UK

John Grant interview: 'I miss drugs all the time'

The singer-songwriter on addiction, Christianity and the new festival he's curated for Hull City of Culture | Telegraph, UK


International news

Harm reduction investment in the European Union

urope is the birthplace of harm reduction, and the region where the successes of this approach in averting epidemics can be most plainly seen. It includes harm reduction champion countries, that have long invested in their national harm reduction programmes and implement a wide array of interventions | HRI, UK

Medical marijuana may be a salve for the US opioid epidemic

Does cannabis really have medicinal properties? As the trend to legalise medical marijuana continues, there is growing evidence that it does help relieve some conditions, leading to hopes that it may help curb the US opioid addiction epidemic | New Scientist, UK

Disney, the Gap and Pepsi urged to quit US Chamber of Commerce

Letter from pressure groups says the trade body’s campaigning against climate change legislation and for tobacco products is at odds with companies’ stance | Guardian, UK

Topless man flags down police car and snorts cocaine in front of officers as raging wildfire approaches

Officers were overseeing the evacuation of 7,000 residents from homes at threat from the brush fire when they were approached by Joshua Benz | Independent, UK

Gardaí look at extending cautions for cannabis

Gardaí are to examine the expansion of an adult caution scheme to include possession of cannabis under the new national drugs strategy | Irish Examiner, Ireland

U.S. House bill would exempt e-cigarettes from tobacco regulations

A bill expected this week in the U.S. House of Representatives would weaken a Food and Drug Administration rule governing e-cigarettes and represent a major victory for the $4.4 billion U.S. vaping industry | Reuters, USA

Opioid-related deaths might be underestimated: CDC

America's prescription drug abuse epidemic may be even more deadly than expected, a new report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests | Medical Xpress, USA

Afghanistan and Iraq veterans' opioid use similar to that of civilians

Heavy rucksacks, parachuting out of helicopters, combat injuries, and stress result in chronic pain for many service members. In the United States, opioids are commonly prescribed to manage chronic pain, and overprescribing is a concern, particularly for veterans' healthcare | EurekAlert, USA

Fed Up With Losing Their Kids To Drug Overdoses, Parents Share Their Stories

“This wasn’t supposed to happen.” Parents take to social media to demand justice for their children | Huffington Post, USA

Can algorithms help kick addiction?

"We were sold years ago on the idea that addicts were people that lived under a bridge," said Jamison Monroe Jr., founder of teen addiction recovery center Newport Academy | | CNN, USA

Donald Trump's Drug Czar Is Very High on Forced Rehab

The man expected to run the Office of National Drug Control Policy is really into "hospital-slash-prison" drug rehab. The only problem is there's a lack of evidence it works | VICE, USA

Five Things We Learned Interviewing Justin Trudeau About Weed

The prime minister really wants you to think of the children | VICE, Canada

How Europe’s heroin capital solved its overdose crisis

What Canada can learn from Portugal about opioid addiction, rehab and recovery | CBC News, Canada

Alcohol and other drug treatment funding, purchasing, and workforce: empirical analyses to inform policy

Ongoing reforms of alcohol and other drug treatment service systems at the federal and state levels have not been shaped by evidence. No Australian research to date has examined how treatment funding and purchasing arrangements impact on client treatment outcomes, despite a body of international literature in other areas of health showing that these variables are important determinants of treatment outcomes | NDARC, Australia

More older Australians are drinking booze in a risky way

Older Australians are more likely to drink alcohol at levels putting their long-term health at risk according to new research by La Trobe University | Age, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Kinship Care Week guest blog: Melanie Onn MP

Melanie Onn MP is the Member of Parliament for Great Grimsby. In this guest blog, she shares her experience of growing up in 'kinship care', raised by her great aunt from the age of seven | Mentor Blog, UK

Allowing pill testing at the Spilt Milk festival would be a big win for public health

With 20 countries already allowing pill testing at music festivals, it’s welcome news that the ACT government is open to a trial later this year | Guardian CIF, UK

Redefining the “Recovery Community”

Over the past half-century, the meaning of “the recovery community” has undergone considerable changes. First used as an umbrella term to embrace local members of AA, the term was gradually extended to embrace members of Al-Anon and Alateen, members of other Twelve-Step fellowships, and then professional and lay allies of AA and related groups | William L White Papers, USA

The No. 1 reason why Trump’s wall won’t fix the drug problem

As President Trump demands federal funding for a border wall he promised Mexico would pay for, he has leaned heavily on the argument that the wall is the only way to stop illegal drugs from coming across the Southwest border | Washington Post Blog, USA

Canada and eight US states have done it. Why can't NSW legalise cannabis?

Some big news has come out of North America and it has nothing to do with Trump. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has introduced legislation that will legalise and regulate cannabis use in Canada | Age comment, Australia