Daily news - 14th June 2018

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UK news

Alcohol & Health: DDN special issue

The June issue of Drink and Drugs News includes a special feature on alcohol and health, aimed at raising awareness and understanding amongst professionals and individuals | DDN, UK

Steroid use for ideal body a 'time bomb' for Welsh NHS

An increase in men using steroids in a bid to get the perfect body is creating a "time bomb" for the NHS, an expert has warned | BBC, UK

Psychosis-causing 'fake MDMA' pills discovered at Parklife festival

Drug charity The Loop says the strong pill, made up of N-ethyl-pentylone, can cause paranoia and keep consumers up for 72 hours straight | ResidentAdvisor, UK

The Definitive Guide To The Charlotte Caldwell Case

This week the story of Charlotte Caldwell and her son Billy has continued to unfold across the mainstream media. The desperate plight of a Mother utterly committed to ensuring her son has access to the medicine he desperately needs is a story worth sharing | Volte Face, UK

Cannabis oil used to treat woman with terminal cancer

A cancer patient from Coventry, who was told she had weeks to live, claims her life has been saved by cannabis oil | ITV, UK

Alcohol Marketing Regulation Report 2017 (PDF)

The report includes the five rulings made by the Independent Complaints Panel, analysis of the enquiries to our Advisory Service, our training offers as well as information about communicating alcohol and health related information, and a brief summary of the issues included in the current Code Review | Portman Group, UK

Alcohol (Minimum Pricing) (England)

I beg to move, That leave be given to bring in a Bill to make provision about the minimum price at which alcohol may be sold from licensed premises in England;  and for connected purposes | They work for you, UK

Prisons: Smoking

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many incidents of (a) violence and (b) disturbance there has been in each prison since the implementation of the smoking ban | They work for you, UK

Hepatitis C

I beg to move, That this House has considered elimination of hepatitis C | They work for you, UK
[ See also video on hepatitis C discussion on Parliament.tv here]

Cement dust and talcum powder were found in drugs at Gottwood Festival

The substances were examined after being left in amnesty bins | MixMag, UK

Wetherspoon to stop selling champagne and prosecco

JD Wetherspoon plans to replace champagne and prosecco with non-European Union sparkling wines | BBC, UK

Eloise Parry diet drug not for consumption, jury told

A man accused of selling a slimming aid that killed a student said it was not intended for human consumption | BBC, UK

One of Britain's biggest drug dealers convicted of running £68m into UK

James Mulvey lived like 'a ghost' to evade justice | Independent, UK

Ecclefechan motorway drugs courier given jail term

A motorist caught on the A74(M) with drugs with a street value of up to £85,000 has been jailed for nearly three years | BBC, UK


International news

Effect of restricting the legal supply of prescription opioids on buying through online illicit marketplaces: interrupted time series analysis

[Open access] To examine the effect on the trade in opioids through online illicit markets (“cryptomarkets”) of the US Drug Enforcement Administration’s ruling in 2014 to reschedule hydrocodone combination products | BMJ, UK [see also editorial]

US painkiller restriction linked to 'significant' increase in illicit online drug trading

The US Drug Enforcement Administration's decision to restrict prescription drugs containing hydrocodone (a popular opioid painkiller) was associated with a 'significant' increase in illicit trading of opioids through online markets, finds a study published by The BMJ today | Medical Xpress, UK

Tobacco industry seeking to control anti-smuggling measures, say critics

The tobacco industry is working to secure control of a system to track the movement of cigarettes around the world, allegedly because it is complicit in the smuggling of its own products, according to a new research paper | Guardian, UK

New Zealand drug-driving deaths surpass drink-driving toll for first time

Road association calls for police to be given saliva testing kits to tackle ‘silent killer’ | Guardian, UK

Mexico Presidential Frontrunner Proposes Amnesty for Non-Violent Drug Traffickers to Counter Surging Bloodshed

The leading presidential candidate in Mexico’s election says scaling back the country’s militarised drug war could reduce bloodshed. Meanwhile, election candidates are being killed in huge numbers | Talking Drugs, UK

Pledge to arm Philippine community chiefs sparks 'Wild West' fears

The Philippines interior ministry said on Wednesday that it plans to acquire pistols for community leaders willing to fight crime, sparking fears of more lawless bloodshed in the country’s violent crackdown on drugs | Telegraph, UK

Cannabis does not increase suicidal behavior in psychiatric patients

McMaster University researchers have found there is no significant association between cannabis use and suicidal behavior in people with psychiatric disorders | Medical Xpress, USA

Doctor's street-level views could change the course of the opioid crisis

A staggering 64,000 people in the United States died in 2016 from drug overdoses, marking a 22 percent rise from the previous year of a cause of death that now annually exceeds those caused by motor vehicle accidents and gun violence | Medical Xpress, USA

This Is Why Xanax Is Blowing Up in America

It’s not exactly breaking news that Xanax has been having something of a moment | VICE, USA

Liberal government rejects Senate changes to marijuana bill, vows all Canadians will be able to grow cannabis

Federal Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor said the House of Commons will reinstate the right of all Canadians to grow cannabis in Bill C-45, saying the proposed legislation needs to be harmonized with laws dealing with alcohol, tobacco and medical marijuana | Globe and Mail, Canada

City Mission secures nearly $17m for treatment facilities

Auckland City Mission will get almost $17 million from the government so it can increase the number of beds it has for alcohol and drug detox | RNZ, New Zealand


Blogs, comment and opinion

Tighter prescribing regulations drive illicit opioid sales

The predictable consequence of cutting supply without tackling demand | BMJ editorial, UK [See first item in International news above]

Addiction lives

Interview with Professor Ingeborg Rossow is a senior researcher at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health in Oslo and head of the institute’s alcohol research group | SSA, UK

How to cope with cross-border alcohol trade?

Estonia is facing a similar situation where Finland has been the last 15 years when a large number of its population (but still a minority) is getting its alcohol from a neighbouring country. For Finland, the source of cheap booze has been Estonia and for Estonia, it is now Latvia | NorDAN, Norway

Traceability: the tobacco industry is part of the problem, not the solution

Tobacco industry executives have a track record of cheating and lying, but sometimes they tell the truth | BMJ editorial, UK

Mind molding psychedelic drugs could treat depression, and other mental illnesses

It seems that psychedelics do more than simply alter perception. According to the latest research from my colleagues and me, they change the structures of neurons themselves | Conversation, USA

Dr Fiona Hutton: We need a well informed referendum on legalising cannabis

I started 2018 with an unmistakable sense of optimism – after years of procrastinating and avoiding the evidence, a government was going to hold a referendum on legalising cannabis by 2020 | NZHerald opinion, New Zealand