Daily news - 12th July 2018

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UK news

Prison conditions ‘most disturbing ever seen’ with staff now accustomed to jails not fit for 21st century, watchdog says

Violence, drug use and self-harm all remain issues, with assaults and self-harm having reached a record high in the past year, the report states | Independent, UK

HM Chief Inspector of Prisons annual report: 2017 to 2018

The annual report of HM Chief Inspector of Prisons, drawing on 77 individual inspection reports of prisons, young offender institutions, secure training centres, immigration detention, police and court custody and other custodial establishments, and thematic reports, published between 1 April 2017 and 31 March 2018 | MoJ, UK

Alcohol-related brain damage at 10-year high

A total of 661 people required treatment for brain injury after alcohol misuse between 2016-17, the equivalent of nearly two people a day | BBC, UK

Minimum Unit Pricing, Discipline and the Politics of Drinking (PDF)

On 1st May 2018, Scotland became the first country in the world to implement a Minimum Unit Price (MUP) for alcoholic drinks. The Scottish Government asserts that prohibiting the sale of alcoholic drinks for less than 50 pence per unit will increase the price of cheaper drinks and thus help to ameliorate violence, ill-health and other individual or social harms that are linked to alcohol consumption | BCS Newsletter, UK

Alcoholic Drinks: Scotland

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment he has made of the effect of minimum unit pricing for alcohol in Scotland on sales of cider; and what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of such minimum unit pricing | They work for you, UK

Alcoholic Drinks: Misuse

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to promote public understanding of the link between alcohol and cancer | They work for you, UK

Policy Briefing: HIV Outbreak in Glasgow - more needs to be done (PDF)

[Updated] There is currently an ongoing and extensive outbreak of HIV amongst people who inject drugs (PWIDs) in Glasgow. Over 100 cases have been linked to this outbreak | NAT, UK

UK Drug Policy is Fuelling an HIV Outbreak in Scotland

The UK Government’s continued opposition to the introduction of drug consumptions is fuelling an HIV outbreak in Scotland | Talking Drugs, UK

MP criticises government position on medicinal cannabis

Ronnie Cowan, Scottish National Party MP for Inverclyde, said in a BBC interview that GPs should be able to prescribe cannabis-based medicines, after criticising the creation of a new patient review panel | Pharmaceutical Journal, UK

Northern Irish girl waiting for cannabis oil licence hospitalised

Seven-year-old Sophia Gibson is in an induced coma following a severe seizure | Guardian, UK

#StigmaMakesMeFeel campaign

Campaign to raise awareness of stigma experienced by families affected by substance use | Adfam, UK

Fit for purpose? Report calls for review of alcohol marketing self-regulation

A new report released by Alcohol Concern explores the role of the Portman Group in the self-regulation of alcohol marketing and promotion, urging the Government to review the current "ineffective" framework as part of its forthcoming national alcohol strategy | Alcohol Policy UK, UK

Can you vape on planes and trains? E-cigarettes and vaping rules explained

Here's everything you need to know about vaping on board planes and trains... because there's no worse way to start a holiday than a hefty vaping fine | The Sun, UK

Indivior issues profit warning as generic drugs hit sales

Drugmaker Indivior has warned that sales and profits this year will be much lower than expected after a cheaper copycat version of its best-selling opioid addiction treatment hit the US market, sending shares in the company tumbling by nearly a third | Telegraph, UK

'There's a lot of negative energy': Damian Marley on weed, politics and his father's exploited image

Bob Marley’s youngest child has worked with everyone from Mick Jagger to Jay-Z – and after discussing marijuana in the House of Commons, he could be making a move into politics | Guardian, UK

TOWIE star: 'I bought cannabis oil for my friend'

Former TOWIE star Danielle Armstrong lost her best friend Sammy to breast cancer in May | BBC, UK

Carseview drug use allegations passed to police

NHS Tayside has said allegations of illegal drug use at a controversial mental health unit in Dundee have been passed on to police | BBC, UK

Drones over Prisons

What steps the Government is taking to tackle the use of drones over prisons | They work for you, UK

Female prison worker arrested on suspicion of intent to supply class A drugs

A prison worker has been arrested on suspicion of possession with intent to supply Class A drugs | Independent, UK


International news

‘Legalise cannabis and tap into market’

Ireland should make cannabis legal for medicinal and recreational use, a barrister has said | The Times, UK

Drug company lawsuit stalls Nevada inmate's opioid execution

A Nevada execution, which would have been the first in the US to use the synthetic opioid fentanyl, has been delayed by a judge | BBC, UK

GSK director sued over US opioid crisis

A board member at GlaxoSmithkline is one of those being sued by the US state of Massachusetts over the US opioid addiction crisis | BBC, UK

Sri Lanka to begin hanging drug dealers to 'replicate success of Philippines'

Government says executions will resume after moratorium of almost 50 years, citing Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs | Guardian, UK

The Mafia Under the Spotlight

It is thought to be the most powerful Mafia organisation in the world and yet few people have heard of it. The ‘Ndrangheta crime syndicate has used the enormous wealth derived from its control of Cocaine smuggling to spread its tentacles far and wide around the world | BBC World Service, UK

Study analyzes opioid overdose risk during and after pregnancy among Massachusetts women

Overdose risk drops during pregnancy but rises after delivery, when fewer resources are available to mothers with substance use disorder | EurekAlert, USA

Hepatitis C vaccine could dramatically reduce transmission in people who inject drugs

Among the most serious consequences of the opioid epidemic is the spread of hepatitis C among injecting drug users | Medical Xpress, USA

Cigarette packaging to be reviewed after shock study

New warnings could be added to cigarette packets after an Australian study found that people remain unaware of all the risks associated with smoking | news.com.au, Australia

Teen regular drinkers more likely to battle alcohol as adults

A study led by UNSW has found the most robust evidence yet that adolescents who drink regularly are twice as likely to be binge drinkers and drink drivers as adults | NDARC, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Harry’s blog 63: Time to deliver on tobacco harm reduction

As the first global state of tobacco harm reduction report is now in the tender care of the copy editors, time to cast an eye once again on the wacky world of THR | NSP blog, UK

Ian Hamilton: Decisions about medicinal cannabis should be made by the health department

The UK’s new licencing process for prescribing cannabis based medicines looks challenging for doctors and patients | BMJ opinion, UK

Bicycle day: 75 years of psychedelic use, abuse, and medical potential

In 1943, Dr Albert Hoffman left his laboratory for a world completely different from that of his morning commute. His bicycle ride home was arduous, and peculiar shapes and colours transformed his town, stirring in him an overbearing anxiety that something was wrong | Joel Day blog, UK

Provinces prepare to push pot

Cannabis retailing isn’t Doug Ford’s top priority as Ontario’s new premier. But it’s on his agenda | Conversation, Canada