Daily news - 22nd February 2019

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UK news

Scots boys among Europe’s top cannabis users

[Registraton may be required] Research found that 15-year-old Scottish boys were the most likely in the UK to have smoked the drug in the past month and were in the top five among 16 European countries | The Times, UK

Efficacy and safety of a monthly buprenorphine depot injection for opioid use disorder: a multicentre, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, phase 3 trial (PDF)

[Includes a correction from yesterday's Medical Xpress article] RBP-6000, referred to as BUP-XR (extended-release buprenorphine), is a subcutaneously injected, monthly buprenorphine treatment for opioid use disorder... Administration of BUP-XR in a health-care setting also mitigates abuse, misuse, diversion, and unintentional exposure. We aimed to investigate the efficacy of different BUP-XR dosing regimens in participants with opioid use disorder | Lancet, UK

Frontline Security Enter the Drug Debate

A new, comprehensive guide has emerged from Working the Doors providing a macro-look at drugs and drug taking. Rather than beating the tired ‘zero tolerance’ drum echoed from many corners of night-time security (which refuses to acknowledge that drug taking in public spaces, such as nightclubs, DOES exist), Steve Johnson recognises the issues in this approach and instead provides a balanced look at the realities and dangers of drug-taking | Volteface, UK

Mother's ketamine plea after drug use rises among young people

Video. A mother has pleaded with young people not to take ketamine after Home Office figures showed use of the drug has increased among young people | BBC, UK

Behind The Scenes | Health Care

Join us for a free introductory session aimed at professionals and students who would like to find out more about the work we do and the shape of drugs and alcohol in Bristol | BDP, UK

Ex-soldier jailed in Dubai over drugs claims 'wants to go home'

Andy Neal, 44, said he has been in prison without charge since October despite the allegations being dropped | BBC, UK

Daniel Fitzjohn murder: Drug dealer jailed for 'senseless' killing

A drug dealer has been jailed for the "senseless killing" of a father who was stabbed as he shouted "you've got the wrong guy" | BBC, UK

Wirral postman stole cash from greetings cards to feed cocaine habit

Michael Easton was convicted of three counts of theft after stealing letters containing cash as well as a woman's cancer results and a condolence card | BBC, UK


International news

Feedback on client progress among most effective ways to improve therapy outcomes

Findings amalgamated for the American Psychological Association show that providing therapists real-time feedback from the client (including substance use clients) on their progress and how to improve it is among the most effective ways available to services to improve outcomes | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

Who are the new drug barons? - audio

Who do you think of when you think about an opiate dealer? Probably not a young woman in China, who dreamed of being an English teacher. This is the story of one woman in her 20’s who’s made a career out of sending fentanyl through the post | BBC, UK

Two sons of El Chapo indicted in US on drug conspiracy charges

Prosecutors allege the brothers conspired to distribute cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana into the States | Guardian, UK

EMCDDA intensifies its cooperation with the European Neighbourhood Policy countries

This year, the EMCDDA has launched a three-year project — EU4Monitoring Drugs (EU4MD) — which will intensify its cooperation with the countries of the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) | EMCDDA, Portugal

Is the drug overdose epidemic unique to the United States?

Have other high-income countries experienced similar increases in drug overdose mortality, or are they likely to going forward? | EurekAlert, USA

Why Has Amazon Limited Sales of Drug Checking Kits?

Some harm reduction interventions, like safer consumption spaces, are criminalized. Others, like syringe exchanges, may precariously hold onto legal status | Filetr Magazine, USA

Heroin Compassion Clubs (PDF)

A cooperative model to reduce opioid overdose deaths & disrupt organized crime’s role in fentanyl, money laundering & housing unaffordability | BCCSU, Canada

'Heroin buyers club' vision unveiled for legal heroin sales in B.C.

The idea is modelled after cannabis compassion clubs, or groups formed to buy life-saving AIDS drugs | CBC News, Canada

First in Canada pilot project at St. Paul’s Hospital ED to provide take-away treatment to opioid overdose patients

A leading-edge pilot project in the St. Paul’s Hospital Emergency Department (ED), in collaboration with the VCH Regional Addiction Program, will provide opioid overdose patients with take-away doses of treatment upon discharge | BCCSU, Canada

Strategies to Reduce Alcohol-Related Harms and Costs in Canada: A Review of Provincial and Territorial Policies (PDF)

This report provides a systematic and comparative review of the implementation of provincial and territorial policies proven to reduce the considerable health and social harms from alcohol. Results from a 2013 policy review of the 10 provinces are shown alongside the latest findings collected for 2017. The overall objective is to encourage greater uptake of effective alcohol control policies and programs to reduce the harms of alcohol in Canada | UVIC, Canada

Strategies to Reduce Alcohol-Related Harms and Costs in Canada: A Review of Federal Policies (PDF)

The annual economic costs of alcohol use in Canada for 2014 are estimated to be $14.6 billion, mostly as a result of impacts on health services, law enforcement and workplace productivity... A substantial body of research is available on the effectiveness of different policies to reduce these harms and costs. In this report, we provide detailed assessments of the extent to which the federal government is implementing evidence-based policies that may reduce alcohol-related harm in Canada | UVIC, Canada

Risks of legal cannabis in New Zealand understated, Massey University researchers say

In particular, the assumption that a legal cannabis market will not result in an increase in harm was misguided given evidence from the United States, the researchers from Massey University said | NZHerald, New Zealand


Blogs, comment and opinion

Harry’s blog 82: Comment is free, but clearly fact-checking isn’t

Recently [The Guardian] has taken up the cudgels against Big Tobacco, which at one level is strange because in most of the countries where the paper is read, smoking has been in steep decline with the companies on the legal backfoot time and again, for instance, regarding new legislation about plain packaging. More generally, the long and tawdry history of tobacco company deceit is hardly news | NSP blog, UK

New Study Casts Doubt on the Claim That Vaping Causes Smoking

recent study confirms that teenagers who try e-cigarettes are more likely than those who don't to subsequently try conventional cigarettes, which is consistent with the hypothesis that vaping is a gateway to smoking | Reason blog, USA

Hemp and Heritage in France

On 5 February 2019, growers, manufacturers, and distributers of “chanvre industriel,” or hemp, from across the globe met in Paris for the “AllHemp – Congrès international du chanvre,” the first international conference of its kind held on French soil | Points blog, USA