Daily news - 6th March 2017

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UK news

Lowering of legal drink-drive limit 'to save lives' urged

The legal drink-drive limit should be lowered in England and Wales to cut alcohol-related accidents, councils and fire authorities have urged | BBC, UK

Durham police will give addicts heroin to inject in 'shooting galleries'

Force will be first in England to implement radical approach that has achieved positive results in a number of European countries | Guardian, UK

Drugs seized 30 times a day in prisons, according to new data

Chief inspector of prisons said there has been a ‘shocking worsening in standards’, with violence linked to drug usage | Guardian, UK

Prisons: Drugs

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what the volume of drugs by type found in prisons was in each of the last seven years; and what proportion of that volume by type was brought into prison by (a) prisoners, (b) visitors, (c) drones or other external means and (d) staff | They work for you, UK

Prisons: Drugs

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what steps her Department is taking to tackle drug dealing (a) in general and (b) of spice in prisons | They work for you, UK

Prisoners are 'cooking nicotine tea' after they were banned from smoking at Cardiff Prison

Prisoners are also increasingly turning to drugs such as Spice after smoking ban, a report has concluded | Wales Online, UK

An analysis of Twitter reactions to the revised guidelines: useful insights?

A new study exploring Twitter reactions to the revised recommended drinking guidelines announced in 2016 has been published in the BMJ. The responses though may be seen to reflect previous indications of the public's response, generally showing a mixture of reactions including a significant sense of 'disagreement' | Alcohol Policy UK, UK

Substance misuse and binge drinking 'higher in young people in foster care'

A Cardiff University study of secondary school students (11-16 years) in Wales looked at the issues affecting youngsters and their relationship with caregivers, teachers and friends | ITV, UK

Tax us more, world's biggest cigarette maker tells Philip Hammond - to persuade smokers to use e-cigarettes

The world’s biggest tobacco company has for the first time asked to be taxed more by Chancellor Philip Hammond – to encourage smokers to switch to healther alternatives | Telegraph, UK

Bail Hostels: Drugs

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many deaths where the presence of a novel psychoactive substance was noted occurred in bail hostels, by premises, in each year since 2010 | They work for you, UK

It's been 10 years since the smoking ban was introduced in Wales

Some people still want it revoked. Others insist it changed society for the better | Wales Online, UK

Hospital smoking ban forces patients onto dangerous roads, says trust

An NHS hospital is refusing to ban smoking on its premises because it believes doing so would put patients in danger of speeding vehicles | Telegraph, UK

Which Teenagers are the Most Likely to Smoke Cigarettes, Drink Alcohol and Smoke Cannabis?

Smoking cigarettes, drinking too much alcohol and smoking cannabis can be detrimental to your health | Volte Face, UK

The K factor

How the party drug ketamine may hold the key to treating patients with severe depression | Chemistry World, UK

Disturbing video shows how new strain of Spice turns Manchester's homeless into 'the walking dead'

It appears to ‘freeze’ those who smoke it leaving them standing or squatting like statues. In some cases they then they keel over onto their faces| Manchester Evening News, UK

Investigation after pupils turned up at St James Catholic High School 'high on Teddy Bear ecstasy'

“We can confirm that there has been an incident this week where a small number of students have taken a recreational drug on their way to school." | Manchester Evening News, UK

Blackpool cannabis growers are going from small to industrial size

Police fear people in Blackpool struggling to make ends meet could be tempted to turn to growing cannabis on an industrial scale | Fleetwood Today, UK

Haunting images of drug addiction of Scottish photographer to be shown at National Galleries

They are a stark collection of powerful self portraits of a Scottish photographer in the grip of drug addiction | Herald, UK

Dopey defendant jailed after being caught trying to deal cannabis in the dock

Drug dealer found to be part of gang of five who supplied drugs to Luton community | IBTimes, UK

Colchester flat fire death: Drug addict who killed pensioner jailed

A drug addict who "exploited and manipulated" a pensioner for his money before starting a fatal fire at his flat has been jailed for 12 years | BBC, UK


International news

The drugs that kill more than pain

‘Utah is in the midst of an explosion in opiate addiction — or “opidemic”. Half a dozen residents are dying of overdoses each week’ | FT, UK

E-cigarettes linked to increased cardiovascular risk factors

University of California researchers found that e-cigarette users were more likely to show increased cardiac sympathetic activity and higher levels of oxidative stress | Pharmaceutical Journal, UK

Canada judge's 'a drunk can consent' ruling stirs debate

A Canadian judge's finding that "clearly a drunk can consent", as he cleared a cab driver of sexual assault, has drawn legal criticism | BBC, UK

Why are painkillers more effective for men than women? Brain cells may provide answer

Scientists have found that differences in microglia activation may be to blame | IBTimes, UK

Kratom: Is the US trying to ban a drug helping heroin addicts beat their habit?

Kratom is hailed as some a wonder drug, but others aren't so convinced | Independent, UK

What It's Like to Become a Doctor During an Opioid Crisis

How do you handle an epidemic that doctors before you had a hand in creating? | VICE, UK

Assaults rise outside Sydney lockout laws zone, but overall figures still down

Report by the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics finds the increase in assaults in spillover suburbs was still heavily outweighed by fall inside the zone | Guardian, UK

Israel marijuana: Users to face fine rather than criminal charge

The Israeli government has taken steps to reduce the penalties for personal marijuana use | BBC, UK

Meeting a Lebanese Drug Lord - BBC iPlayer

Lebanon is known around the world for its hash. In Lebanon’s Bekaa valley, farmers grow it with impunity, making millions of dollars a year. Armed with weapons and militia men, the drug lords have become untouchable. Benjamin Zand visits one of the country’s biggest drug lords and find out how the Syrian civil war means the army are distracted, so hashish farms are flourishing | BBC, UK

Man wins bet after drinking entire bottle of tequila and dies immediately

The 23-year-old was in a nightclub in the Dominican Republic when he was offered 12,531 pesos, the equivalent of around £500, by fellow club-goers to down the bottle, while onlookers filmed him on their phones | Independent, UK

After Alex 'N Bomb' tragedy, drug education can prevent more deaths

Sister Nicole: ‘It's not when it's going to happen again, but whose child is next' | Independent, Ireland

Some physical sports can lead to heroin use, prescription drug abuse among teens

High school athletes who play high-contact sports like hockey are at greater risk for heroin use and nonmedical use of prescription opioids, a new University of Michigan study found | Medical Xpress, USA

Here’s What A Survey Of 14 Vape Shops Says About E-Cigarettes

Nearly half of the people who use e-cigarettes do so to quit tobacco smoking, a new study suggests | Mental Daily, USA

First, people started vaping to quit cigarettes. Then they did it for another reason. Here's why

If you want to understand people's rationale for puffing on e-cigarettes, all you need to do is look at their tweets. A new study did just that—and the findings are pretty damn eye-opening | Men's Health, USA

Study shows role of depression in the ongoing tobacco epidemic

The prevalence of smoking has remained fairly stable over the past decade after declining sharply for many years | Science Daily, USA

Women Need Better Options for Drug Treatment

While a third of global drug users are women and girls, only one in five drug treatment recipients is female | VICE, USA

Longer addiction treatment is better, study confirms

The study included 72 people, with an average age of 30 years. The participants were being treated for a variety of addictions, including alcohol and drugs such as opioids, amphetamines and benzodiazepines | Medical Xpress, USA

Germany expects cannabis-growing program to be going in 2019

German authorities say they expect to have a cannabis-growing program up and running in 2019 after the country approved legislation allowing some patients to get the drug as a prescription medication | Medical Xpress, USA

Prescription Opioid Tax Proposed by Lawmakers in California, Advocates in NY

The proposed tax would help fund addiction treatment | The Fix, USA

PM Justin Trudeau set to discuss overdose crisis with first responders in Vancouver

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will meet with first responders and health-care workers in Vancouver today to discuss the illicit drug overdose crisis that has claimed 922 lives in British Columbia last year | Global News, Canada

Abusive parents can be forced into alcohol, drug tests

The State Government had initially decided to leave the power to require drug and alcohol tests to a court but has now agreed to beef up the powers of the Child Protection Department chief executive | Adelaide Now, Australia

Doctor tells death in custody inquest of risk of under-prescribing methadone in prison

The doctor who put Steven Freeman on methadone two days before he died has told an inquest there are serious risks associated with under-prescribing the drug | Age, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Nicotine in the news

Back in the day, I worked in the library of the Institute for the Study of Drug Dependence. The collection policy was literally everything in English on illegal/non-medical drug use. We ended up with one of the best English language drug libraries in the world | NSP Blog, UK

5 Reasons to Celebrate No Smoking Day 

No Smoking Day is just around the corner on Tuesday 8 March. But why should your organisation take up the baton to promote it? | ASH Scotland Blog, UK

Duncan Selbie's Friday message – 3 March 2017

One in four patients in our acute hospital beds are smokers, yet recent figures from the British Thoracic Society show that only 1 in 13 patients who smoke are referred for treatment for tobacco addiction and only 1 in 10 hospitals completely enforce their fully smoke-free premises | PHE Blog, UK

Good-bye and hello: Call for new ECF Committee Members

We are calling for new Committee Members to the Early Careers Forum (ECF) of the European Society for Prevention Research (EUSPR). The term of the current committee is ending this year, and so we are looking for early-career preventionists (researchers, policy-makers, practitioners and other professionals active in the field of prevention) to take over this important work and continue the Forum activities | EUSPR, Poland

Opinion: Naloxone not enough to address opioid crisis

Canada faces a major public health crisis as people continue to die from opioid overdoses. Measures to save lives present new challenges and divert attention from preventive measures to tackle the problem’s root causes | Edmonton Journal opinion, Canada