Daily news - 5th February 2018

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UK news

NHS plan to prescribe e-cigarettes goes up in smoke after the only device licensed for medical use is axed

Linda Bauld, a professor of health policy at Stirling University, said: ‘I am disappointed not to see at least one type of electronic cigarette available on the NHS to help people quit smoking and which is significantly safer than cigarettes, available for a small prescription charge | Mail Online, UK

Bristol’s new-look drug and alcohol services begin today

The services are commissioned by Bristol City Council and provide free and confidential advice, support and treatment for adults with problematic alcohol and drug use. ROADS also support families and carers as well as organisations and communities wanting advice or guidance about the effects of drugs and alcohol and the help available | Bristol City Council, UK

The Easterhouse drug addict who became a pastor

A former drug-addict from Easterhouse has turned his life around to become a blog-writing pastor | BBC, UK

Mum tells how secretly giving her dying son cannabis saved his life - as well as her own

With son Deryn given just days left to live, Callie Blackwell was willing to try anything to help - and was stunned by the results | Mirror, UK

Drug claims at 'zero tolerance' Stockton hostel New Walk

Vulnerable people at a hostel which claims to have a "zero tolerance" policy to drugs are being exposed to heroin, a BBC investigation has found | BBC, UK

This Morrisons supermarket in Guiseley is selling beer on draught - video

A Morrisons supermarket near Leeds is selling local ales on draught at its new in-store bar | i news, UK

M25 Epping crash: Woman cleared of causing death by dangerous driving

A motorist whose car was hit by a lorry after running out of petrol on a motorway has been cleared of causing death by dangerous driving | BBC, UK

Woman jailed for Cambridgeshire drink-drive death crash

A "cavalier and reckless" motorist twice the drink-drive limit crossed a dual carriageway and killed a woman who was on her way home for Christmas | BBC, UK

Glaswegians wanted for 'non-judgemental' TV documentary about cocaine use

The media firm want people who make, distribute or deal the drug and those who use it on a regular basis to share their stories | Glasgow Live, UK


International news

Addressing alcohol-related dementia should involve better detection, not watchful waiting

Alcohol-related dementia represents an underrecognised mental disorder with both clinical and public mental health aspects | Cambridge Core, UK

Can a breath test smoke out stoned drivers?

As more US states legalise marijuana use, the race is on to find a drug version of the roadside breathalyser | Observer, UK

Oregon is producing three times more marijuana than it can consume

'Make no mistake about it, we are going to do something about it,' US attorney says | Independent, UK

Afghanistan veteran faces deportation from the US over a drug conviction

Father of two US citizens had served in Afghanistan before being convicted of drug crime | Independent, UK

'Cocaine Cowboy' Gustavo Falcon pleads guilty to his role in Florida cartel after 26 years on the run

As part of the 'Los Muchachos outfit prosecutors say he trafficked $2bn (£1.41bn) worth of the drug, or an estimated 75 tonnes from Colombia into Miami in the 1980s | Independent, UK

Thailand bans smoking on popular tourist beaches in attempt to curb litter

Thailand has issued a ban on smoking at 24 popular tourist beaches in order to tackle environmental concerns and curb littering | Independent, UK

Drippers, throat hits and fairy farts: Inside the hidden world - and secret language - of a vaping bar and the legal minefield faced by e-cigarette users

The sign at the front door warns that anyone entering must be at least 18 years old and the frosted glass windows mean no one can see in or out | Mail Online, UK

IOC president blasts CAS after decision to overturn 28 Russian drug bans plunges Winter Olympics into turmoil

The president of the International Olympic Committee has demanded an “urgent” review of sport’s highest court after it quashed 28 Russian drugs bans to plunge the Winter Olympics into turmoil | Telegraph, UK

India Punjab football club fights drug addiction with sport

A community football club in India, which is using sport to keep young people away from drugs, has worked with nearly 5,000 children already | BBC, UK

Analyzing street drugs points to potential early warning system in opioid crisis

In just two years, the powerful opioid fentanyl went from nonexistent to detected in more than 1 in 7 stamp bags analyzed by the Allegheny County Office of the Medical Examiner. The findings suggest that real-time information about stamp bags can be used to supplement current public health surveillance measures and could serve as an early warning of new illegal drugs of high lethality available at the local level | Science Daily, USA

High Schools Stock Up on Narcan to Prepare for Overdose Emergencies

Schools across the country are equipping staff with the opioid overdose antidote Narcan | The Fix, USA

Orange County’s only needle exchange shuts down after Santa Ana denies permit

Orange County's first and only needle exchange program has shut down after Santa Ana city officials denied its permit application, a move some local advocacy groups and the state's leading public health agency say could negatively affect public welfare | LATimes, USA

Vancouver forges new paths in revival of psychedelic research

The B.C. Centre on Substance Use has assembled a team that’s positioning Vancouver as a global force in investigating mind-altering drugs for the treatment of addiction and mental disorders | Georgia Straight, Canada

Rainbow Serpent Showed Sniffer Dogs Can't Keep Drugs Out of Music Festivals

"I was just hoping our car didn’t get searched... I was just going to down my stash if they did." | VICE, Australia

Application flagged for legal pill-testing at Grovin the Moo

The wheels are in motion for a second attempt to legally pill-test in the ACT | Age, Australia

High alcohol consumption during holiday season has led to rehab for many: expert

The hangover from the party season has left many Australians searching for rehab help, according to experts in the industry | SBS News, Australia

Are you aged 17–24? Want help to manage your drinking and anxiety?

Join the inroads program trial and get FREE access to an online skills development program and phone/email sessions with a trained psychologist | NDARC et al, Australia

When the best escape was cocaine

Sydney's cocaine trade began taking shape in the early 1920s. Today, sophisticated drug franchise businesses operate multi-million dollar rings | Age, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

What about women?

This is the second in a series of blog posts discussing topics raised at the recent Drug Strategy Implementation Events which Collective Voice delivered on behalf of the Home Office in November 2017 | Collective Voice Blog, UK

Accepting complexity but thinking simply

I can’t be the only person interested in alcohol policy who feels like minimum unit pricing (MUP) is in the news constantly at the moment.  Whether it’s the judgement from Scotlandthe plans to introduce it in Wales, or the hearings of select committees in Westminster, it’s the lightning rod through which all discussions of alcohol policy seem to be conducted | Thinking to some purpose blog, UK

A letter to... the son we lost to heroin

We tried to keep you close, but all that did was hone your skills in deception’: the letter you always wanted to write | Guardian, UK

Let's Temper Hope For Paul Flynn's Medical Cannabis Bill With Some Reality

Expectations are being raised beyond what is realistic. There is widespread misunderstanding about what the bill is and its chances of getting any further | CLEAR blog, UK

Could prescription heroin be the next step in treating addiction? |  Opinion

Last week, when Philadelphia announced its support of Comprehensive User Engagement Sites (CUES) — also known as safe injection facilities — the trolls came out in full force, to battle with misinformation and zero data | The Inquirer, USA

Fixing pain management could help us solve the opioid crisis

Australia is facing a critical public health issue of poorly managed pain. The combination of poor health outcomes, inappropriate prescribing for pain and non-prescription use of opioids has resulted in opioid-related deaths surpassing the national annual road toll | Conversation, Australia