Daily news - 29th October 2018

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UK news

Drugs: Rehabilitation

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the funding allocated for substance misuse services in England by (a) local authority and (b) in total in each year since 2012 | They work for you, UK


To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government on the financial effect of the increase in the cost of prescribing buprenorphine on the provision of substance misuse services | They work for you, UK


To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he plans to increase the number of (a) needle and syringe programmes for people with addictions and (b) people whom those programmes cover | They work for you, UK

Electronic Cigarettes

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what comparative assessment his Department has made of the advice on the efficacy of e-cigarettes as a stop smoking aid between Public Health England’s document entitled Stop smoking options: guidance for conversations with patients and NICE’s document entitled Stop smoking interventions and services guidance | They work for you, UK

Public support for cannabis legalisation at record high

[Shared article] The public now overwhelmingly backs the full legalisation of cannabis, according to a poll that suggests there has been a seismic shift in opinion since the government sanctioned medical use of the drug | The Times, UK

Alfie Dingley 'amazingly well' after cannabis treatment

A seven-year-old boy who was at the heart of a public outcry over medicinal cannabis legalisation is doing "amazingly well", his mother has said | BBC, UK

Fight for medical marijuana continues, says Charlotte Caldwell

Although doctors will be able to prescribe cannabis products to patients from next Thursday, the mother of an autistic child who has campaigned for the law to change says she still has more to do | i news, UK

Licensing figures 2018 & Home Office consultation

The Home Office have released 2018 statistics on alcohol and late night refreshment licensing in England and Wales, showing a further small but consistent rise in the total number of licensed premises. The release also includes a short consultation [pdf] on the statistical bulletin | Alcohol Policy UK, UK

Is the alcohol industry doing well by ‘doing good’? Findings from a content analysis of the alcohol industry’s actions to reduce harmful drinking

The aims of this study were to: (1) describe alcohol industry corporate social responsibility (CSR) actions conducted across six global geographic regions; (2) identify the benefits accruing to the industry (‘doing well’); and (3) estimate the public health impact of the actions (‘doing good’) | BMJ open, UK

Price Of Cigarettes Could Soar Above £10 As Smokers Face 'Sin Tax'

Smoking is an expensive habit as it is - regardless of whether you're a full blown every day user or enjoy a few clickies on a boozy night out - most people have been shocked by the price | LADBible, UK

Addaction joins Boy George on UK tour

The charity Addaction will join Boy George and Culture club as the official charity partner on their upcoming UK tour | Addaction, UK

Cannabis in coffee: 'Just like having a shot of syrup'

A coffee shop with a twist has opened on a busy Swansea street. Bogarts CBD Coffee House is one of a growing number of businesses selling products containing cannabidiol (CBD) | BBC, UK

Top tipples: experts favour supermarket gins in blind taste test

Industry panel places four own-brand gins in top five best buys as UK industry grows | Guardian, UK

Gang who flew drones carrying drugs into prisons jailed

Seven members of a gang which used drones to fly more than £500,000 worth of drugs into prisons have been jailed | BBC, UK


International news

Binge drinking 'is in your genes', new study claims

Scientists may have discovered why some people are prone to binge drinking more than others | Independent, UK

Nevada could raise $1bn from seven years of marijuana sales – report

Nevada could raise more than $1bn in the first seven years of recreational marijuana sales, according to an economic analysis released by an industry group on Friday | Guardian, UK

Tobacco industry accused of flavour capsule 'tricks' to lure young smokers

Public Health Association says flavour-changing capsules in cigarettes is ‘an extraordinary assault on public health’ | Guardian, UK

New drink-driving rules have taken effect

New rules on drink-driving have taken effect which will automatically disqualify any motorists who are found to have consumed alcohol | Irish Examiner, Ireland

Statement from FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D., on agency’s efforts to advance new ways to increase the availability of naloxone as one means for reducing opioid overdose deaths

With the number of overdose deaths from prescription and illicit opioids doubling from 21,089 in 2010 to 42,249 in 2016, it’s critical that we continue to tackle this human tragedy from all fronts – including, and importantly, looking at new ways to increase the availability of naloxone | FDA, USA

Juul Drops E-Cig Education Program for Schools

Plan to offer "science-based resources on vaping" were "misunderstood," company said | MedPage Today, USA

'Weed the People’ Explores Medical Marijuana for Kids With Cancer

Marijuana, both medicinal and recreational, is growing more mainstream. Medical marijuana is now legalized in a majority of states, and 62% of Americans support legalizing it outright — but in the political realm, the plant has long been controversial | TIME, USA

Cannabidiol is being touted as a magical elixir, a cure-all now available in bath bombs, dog treats and even pharmaceuticals. But maybe it’s just a fix for our anxious times | NYTimes, USA

Sex, drugs and estradiol: why cannabis affects women differently

Females use and experience cannabis differently to males -- and neuroscience is beginning to explain why, says a new review | EurekAlert, USA

High on the highway—stoned-driving on the increase

Getting behind the wheel after cannabis use is on the rise in the US, and THC, not alcohol, is now the most commonly detected intoxicant in US drivers. Detecting levels of THC, however, is challenging and the methods used so far cannot accurately determine a person's level of impairment | Medical Xpress, USA

Researchers explain how LSD changes perception

Psychedelic drugs such as LSD have a profound impact on human consciousness, particularly perception. Researchers at Yale and the University of Zurich provide new insight into the psychedelic effects of LSD on the brain and potential therapeutic uses of the drug | Medical Xpress, USA

US Troops Deploy ‘Overwhelming Force’ Against Iceland’s Beer Supplies

U.S. troops landed in Iceland last week ahead of the start the largest NATO military exercise since the Cold War, and apparently, they left their mark in the most appropriate way possible: by drinking every last beer in the nation’s capital | task and Purpose, USA

Australia’s medical cannabis industry set to boom, new report finds

A report on Australia's fledgling medicinal cannabis industry suggests it could expand to almost 200 times its current size within a decade | SBS, Australia

New Zealand 'well-behind' on lifesaving drug reform - Helen Clark

Former Prime Minister Helen Clark says New Zealand urgently needs a new approach to drug policy, in which drugs are decriminalised and state-regulated | NZHub, New Zealand

Hiking tax on alcohol could save lives, say university researchers

The study, from staff at University of Otago, Wellington, revealed that increasing the tax by 15 cents per standard drink would reduce alcohol sales by 4.3 per cent within 12 months | NZHerald, New Zealand


Blogs, comment and opinion

E-cigarettes could boost UK health, headlines claim

E-cigarettes are a controversial topic, and they are hitting the headlines again in claims that they could “boost health” and “reduce deaths”. What’s the truth behind the headlines? | BHF, UK

British Doctors Don’t Understand Cannabinoid Medicine. They’ve Been Denied Education In The Basic Science

Today’s letter to the Times from a group of pain medicine consultants (reproduced below) is is an astonishing display of evidence-free ignorance from a profession that needs to challenge its own prejudice | Clear blog, UK

Medical cannabis: Listen to the doctors, Home Secretary

I am feeling vindicated. Last week I warned in TCW that the Home Secretary had acted prematurely and dangerously on medical cannabis | Conservative Woman, UK

Philip Morris’ cigarette ad – a classic case of smokes and mirrors

Excuse me if I’m slightly cynical about the tobacco giant’s new anti-smoking campaign | Guardian opinion, UK

Mental health royal commission must include drug and alcohol services

On Wednesday came the welcome announcement that, if re-elected next month, Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews will hold a royal commission into mental health | Age opinion, Australia