Daily news - 26th September 2018

Weekly subscribe button

UK news

The Scottish health survey (PDF)

The survey provides us with an immensely valuable collection of data on cardiovascular disease and related risk factors including smoking, alcohol, diet, physical activity and obesity. Information on general health, mental health and dental health is also included | Scottish Government, UK

'Dramatic' drop in teenage alcohol consumption in Scotland

A World Health Organisation study led by the University of St Andrews found Scotland's teenagers are consuming far less alcohol than previously | BBC, UK

British teenage girls are among the heaviest drinkers in Europe – and have overtaken boys

The study for the World Health Organisation shows that teenage girls in England, Scotland and Wales take three of the top six places in a drinking league table comparing 36 European nations | Telegraph, UK

Cannabis #MHQT

Free event starting at 6.30pm. Smoke Signals: what does legalised cannabis mean for mental health? Join our panel of experts at Mental Health Question Time on Wed 26th September for a lively public discussion about a vital public health issue | Mental Elf, UK

Licensing Laws: Aviation

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have, if any, to extend the Licensing Act 2003 to apply airside at airports | They work for you, UK

New Books on Addiction

Addiction publishes new book lists five times per year, both in print and on this website.  Items are alphabetised by author within each list | SSA, UK

Corporate sponsorship diverts research and distorts public policy, report finds

Coca-Cola cited for funding physical activity research to take focus off sugary drinks | Guardian, UK

Cheshire Police dawn raids target suspected drug dealers

Fifteen men have been arrested and cocaine worth £142,000 seized in dawn raids targeting suspected drug dealers | BBC, UK


International news

Acapulco: Mexico police under investigation over alleged drugs ties

The entire police force in the coastal Mexican resort of Acapulco is under investigation amid suspicions of infiltration by drug gangs | BBC, UK

Harris reverses decision to drop cancer warnings on alcohol

Minister had seemed to accept amendments to controversial Bill aimed at reducing consumption | Irish Times, Ireland

Alcohol Bill devoid of key expert group recommendations

The National Substance Misuse Strategy Steering Group reported in February 2012 after three years of study | Irish Examiner, Ireland

Drugs Minister admits 'crack cocaine use on rise and communities live in fear' as she agrees to meet Dublin GAA club ravaged by 'epidemic'

Catherine Byrne was responding to a call for help from a local sports club who say kids as young as 13 are being groomed to become drug dealers | Dublin Live, Ireland

The Invisible Majority: People Whose Drug Use Is Not Problematic

For years, Mark* woke up each morning, made breakfast for his two young children, and dropped them off at school before continuing to his own job as a pre-school teacher in Baltimore, Maryland. His life was ordinary—except that each day before breakfast, he went into the bathroom and injected black tar heroin into his veins | Filter Magazine, USA

Lancaster professor aims to understand how genes affect smoking cessation

The Canadian Institute of Health Research has awarded $929,475 to Professor Jo Knight of Lancaster Medical School, Lancaster Data Science Institute and the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto | News Medical, USA

FDA is considering banning online sales of e-cigarettes: Gottlieb

U.S. regulators are considering banning the online sales of e-cigarettes, the head of the Food & Drug Administration Scott Gottlieb said on Tuesday | Reuters, USA

E-cigarettes, cigarettes, and dual use: Which behavior predicts marijuana use among high school students?

Adolescents who use e-cigarettes, tobacco cigarettes, or both (dual users) are more likely than non-users to report misusing prescription drugs, alcohol, and marijuana.  Using substances during this developmental time period is related to altered brain development, leading to developmental issues such as poor decision making and emotional regulation problems | BASIS, USA

Seattle drops over 500 convictions for marijuana possession after legalization

The Seattle Municipal Court ordered more than 500 convictions for misdemeanor marijuana possession be vacated after Washington legalized marijuana in 2012 | The Hill, USA

New curriculum available to teach opioid risks to middle school students

A new and free science-based curriculum designed to teach adolescents about the risks of opioids has been released by Project ALERT, a national evidence-based drug education program created and managed by the nonprofit RAND Corporation | Medical Xpress, USA

Leading addiction experts call for more neuroscience research on long-term recovery

September is addiction recovery month, and, in the midst of the current opioid epidemic, it's an apt moment for addiction research experts to map the future path forward for a long-term recovery strategy for substance abuse | EurekAlert, USA

There's a new drug crisis harming Americans

There is another drug crisis following the opioid crisis and that is the benzodiazepines with the brand names of Valium, Xanax, Klonopin and more | The Hill, USA

Coordinated care for patients with cirrhosis: fewer liver-related emergency admissions and improved survival

Objectives were To compare the incidence of liver-related emergency admissions and survival of patients after hospitalisation for decompensated cirrhosis at two major hospitals, one applying a coordinated chronic disease management model (U1), the other standard care (U2); to examine predictors of mortality for these patients | MJA, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Harry's Blog #70: Are tobacco regulators Big Tobacco’s new best mates?

It is a central tenet of those opposed to tobacco harm reduction as it applies to safer nicotine products that the whole thing is a massive con trick by Big Tobacco to both entice kids to move onto regular daily smoking and inveigle ex-smokers to take up the habit once more | NSP blog, UK

The jury is still out on the effects of legalised cannabis in North America

Recent decades have seen a sea change in cannabis regulation in North America beginning with the legalisation of the drug for medicinal use in the 1990s in some US states and then referendums which legalised marijuana for recreational use in many states after 2014 | LSE blog, UK

Radical Temperance: Conference General Report

Today’s post comes from Dr. Annemarie McAllister, Senior Research Fellow in History at the University of Central Lancashire, and Pam Lock, a doctoral candidate and the GW4 Developing People Officer at the University of Bristol. They organized a conference on alcohol called Radical Temperance: Social Change and Drink, from Teetotalism to Dry January, held at the University of Central Lancashire in Preston, England, from June 28-29, 2018. This is their report | Points blog, UK

Should we all be drinking whisky in the bath, like Gwyneth Paltrow?

The Goop founder, who previously advocated inserting jade eggs into the vagina to restore energy levels, has revealed she likes a daily dram in the tub | Guardian, UK

We’re going to need a tobacco buyout for the developing world

Millions of smallholder farmers and their families in Africa and other parts of the developing world are going to lose their livelihoods due to the coming (welcome) fall in global demand for tobacco | The Hill opinion, USA

Canada signs on to U.S.-led renewal of war on drugs

Canada was rebuked on Monday by a group of world leaders and experts on drug policy for endorsing a Trump-led declaration renewing the “war on drugs” and for passing up a critical moment to provide global leadership on drug regulation | Globe and Mail opinion, Canada

The NT is putting a minimum floor price on alcohol, because evidence shows this works to reduce harm

From October 1, 2018, one standard drink in the Northern Territory will cost a minimum of A$1.30. This is known as floor price, which is used to calculate the minimum cost at which a product can be sold, depending on how many standard drinks the product contains | Conversation, Australia

It's time we walked the talk on treating drugs as a health issue

Illegal drugs are unregulated drugs. No country in the world, through pleas for abstinence nor ratcheting up penalties, has been able to eradicate them | Stuff.co.nz opinion, New Zealand