Daily news - 25th April 2019

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UK news

‘You can’t arrest your way out of record drug-related deaths,’ say police

Police forces across the UK are offering drug users pre-arrest education and treatment instead of a caution or charge | Guardian, UK

Informing Interventions to reduce health Inequalities (Triple I)

Using the best data available, we provide practical tools and interpreted research findings. These estimate and compare the potential impact of different policies and interventions that can affect health and health inequalities in Scotland. This helps you decide which actions will have the biggest impact on population health and health inequalities, before implementation | NHS Health Scotland, UK

CBD in cannabis could reduce psychosis risk from high strength skunk, study shows

Cannabidiol (CBD), a chemical derived from the cannabis plant, can counteract the effects of high strength "skunk" strains and may help to reduce the risk of serious mental health conditions like psychosis, according to a new study | Independent, UK

Tobacco salesman given 1,200 free cigarettes a month has inoperable lung cancer

A former tobacco salesman who was given free cigarettes as a perk of the job and now has inoperable lung cancer is hoping to sue his ex-employer | Independent, UK

‘I shouldn’t have to look over my shoulder’: Carly Barton’s fight for medicinal cannabis

It is the only thing that relieves Carly Barton’s crippling pain, but she can’t take cannabis legally. So she’s growing her own – and has told the police | Guardian, UK

Opiates: Death

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps his Department has taken to reduce the numbers of deaths from misuse of heroin and morphine in (a) coastal communities and (b) Portsmouth | They work for you, UK

Families: Disadvantaged

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the Answer of 22 March 2019 to Question 234235 on Families: Disadvantaged, how many children supported by the troubled families programme have subsequently been taken into care | They work for you, UK

Drug and alcohol addictions - BBC Radio Norfolk

A Norfolk service supporting people with addictions says it's changing people's lives | BBC, UK

Plans submitted for Jersey's first cannabis farm and knowledge centre

A Jersey-based partnership has submitted plans to build what could be Jersey’s first medicinal cannabis farm and research centre | Jersey Post, UK

David Cotterill: Former Wales forward reveals alcohol battle

Former Wales international David Cotterill has revealed he has been battling alcohol problems | BBC, UK

Atakan Atay: Wife denies being 'Jekyll and Hyde drinker'

A woman accused of murdering her husband has denied having a "Jekyll and Hyde" personality when she had been drinking | BBC, UK


International news

Periods of high risk in and out of opioid substitution treatment

What precautions can be taken to increase safety, and during which key periods should resources be focused on preventing drug-related deaths?
Guiding clinicians and policymakers in the optimal provision of opioid substitution treatment, this review investigates the variable levels of protection and risk associated with methadone and buprenorphine over time | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

US drug company executives charged with fuelling opioid crisis

Two former executives of a major US pharmaceutical company have been charged with conspiracy to distribute controlled substances in an unprecedented case | Telegraph, UK

Trump praises China for executing drug dealers: 'I appreciate that very much'

'In China, unlike in our country, you pay the ultimate price. So I appreciate that very much' | Independent, UK

NSW drug use inquiry to examine pill testing, despite state government opposition

Premier Gladys Berejiklian has been criticised for saying there was ‘no evidence’ pill testing would save lives | Guardian, UK

Yaba: The cheap synthetic drug convulsing a nation

Hundreds of thousands of people in Bangladesh have become hooked on yaba - a mixture of methamphetamine and caffeine sold as cheap red or pink pills. The official response has been harsh, with hundreds of people killed in alleged incidents of "crossfire" | BBC, UK

Weed Drinks Are Set to Dominate the Cannabis Market in Canada

From cannabis beer to margarita-flavored THC tonics, weed companies are betting big on beverages | VICE, UK

What’s new about adolescent drinking in the Nordic countries? (PDF)

A report on Nordic studies of adolescent drinking habits in 2000–2018 | Nordic Welfare Centre, Sweden

Half of Russia’s Alcohol Sold Illegally, Regulators Say

Almost half of the alcohol products sold in Russia last year were on the market illegally, the state Federal Alcohol Market Regulation Service (Rosalkogolregulirovanie) said this week | Moscow Times, Russia

Trump vows to 'smash the grip' of drug addiction

President Trump on Wednesday vowed to “smash the grip” of drug addiction in an address to a substance abuse summit in Atlanta | The Hill, USA

Drug overdoses in young people on the rise

In American adolescents and young adults, death rates from drug poisoning, particularly from opioids, have sharply increased over the last 10 years, according to new research in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs | EurekAlert, USA

Fentanyl Speedballs Are the Latest Disturbing Trend in America's Opioid Crisis

Deliberately mixing the powerful and deadly drug with stimulants like coke and meth is one (dangerous) way users are adjusting to a new market | VICE, USA

New “Generic” Naloxone: Expect More Big-Pharma Sleight of Hand

It’s been less than two weeks since the US Department of Justice joined a string of lawsuits against Indivior—the maker of the drug Suboxone, which is used to treat opioid use disorder— alleging the company engaged in a fraudulent patent-hopping scheme designed to prevent cheaper generic versions of the drug (a combination of buprenorphine and naloxone) from hitting market | Filter Magazine, USA

America's 'Wild West' of Weed Is Dying Out – Here's What's Replacing It

Working in cannabis used to be a crime, but now it's looking like a real career, complete with benefits | VICE, USA

One in 7 Washington State drivers with children in the car recently used marijuana

According to a roadside survey conducted in Washington State, 14.1% of drivers with children in the car--nearly one in seven--tested positive for THC, the principal psychoactive compound in marijuana | EurekAlert, USA

How ketamine can change the brain to fight depression

New research in mice, which the National Institutes of Health supported, shows how ketamine can alter brain circuits, quickly redressing depression-like symptoms | MNT, USA

Treating addiction: Cryo-EM technology enables the 'impossible'

Scientists used a compound found in a shrub native to Africa to reveal the three major shapes of the serotonin transporter, a protein in the brain linked to anxiety and depression. The discovery opens new avenues for developing medications to treat addiction | Science Daily, USA

Teens prefer harm reduction messaging on substance use

Zero-tolerance messaging tuned out by most teenagers | EurekAlert, Canada

Two people die at Rabbits Eat Lettuce music festival near Warwick in Queensland

The bodies of a 24-year-old man and a 22-year-old womanhave been found inside a tent at a music festival on Queensland's Southern Downs | abc.net.au, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

The declining trend in adolescent drinking has been particularly strong in the Nordic countries but differences between the countries remain

Stricter parents and stricter control of adolescent free time along with alcohol being harder to obtain may be some of the reasons for the decline says a fresh report from the Nordic Welfare Centre | IAS blog, UK

Psychedelics to treat mental illness? Australian researchers are giving it a go

An estimated one in ten Australians were taking antidepressants in 2015. That’s double the number using them in 2000, and the second-highest rate of antidepressant use among all OECD countries | Conversation, Australia

Alcobore or woke abstainer: what kind of drinker are you?

There is one subject that makes all previous boring ones, such as what I am currently watching on television, look riveting by comparison: how much less we are drinking and where we sit on the new sobriety scale | Age opinion, Australia