Daily news - 18th November 2019

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UK news

Switch to vaping 'helps smokers' hearts'

Smokers can improve the health of their hearts within weeks of switching to e-cigarettes, the largest trial of its kind shows | BBC, UK

Drugs: 'Act now or the price is more young people's deaths'

Substance misuse expert Rowdy Yates believes residential rehab centres will reduce fatalities | STV, UK

Injecting-related health harms and overuse of acidifiers among people who inject heroin and crack cocaine in London: a mixed-methods study

[Open access journal] Venous access is a priority for people who inject drugs (PWID). Damage and scarring of peripheral veins can exacerbate health harms, such as skin and soft tissue infections (SSTI), and promote transitions to femoral and subcutaneous injecting | Harm Reduction Journal, UK

Hooked: rehab - audio

Melissa and Jade talk about their time in rehab and how to access help | BBC Sounds, UK

Alcohol Awareness - audio

Student Services Team Leader Helen Jolley, & student Sam Hayward talk about the topic | BBC Radio Solent, UK

humankind charity’s positive impact across its services

A new report has highlighted how Humankind charity services are creating fairer chances for more people than ever | Humankind, UK


Of all the people in Great Britain who have ever smoked, nearly 60% have now given up.  In Cambridgeshire, over 85% of people now do not smoke, with the number of smokers choosing to stop continuing to increase | Cambridgeshire County Council, UK

West Midlands Take Drugs Seriously: Activist Training

Free event. November 21st 2019. 6.30pm. Birmingham. We will be looking at how we can campaign together to show our politicians that the public increasingly supports reform. We will provide you with all the skills you need to campaign for change | J Slater, UK

Hundreds of charges in ‘Operation Continuum’ drug dealer crackdown

[Harry Shapiro of DrugWise quoted] Major progress has been made in recent months to disrupt the activities of drug dealers and reduce the overall amount of drug use in Tower Hamlets, according to a new council report | East London Lines, UK

Cannabis farm exposed by Nottinghamshire flooding

A man has been arrested after a van carrying cannabis plants from a flooded house was intercepted by police | BBC, UK

Bristol drug dealers sentenced after police crackdown

Thirty-five people involved in the supply of class A drugs in Bristol, including crack cocaine and heroin, have been sentenced | BBC, UK

Man caught growing cannabis claims it was a Christmas present for himself

Scott Mereweather, 29, admitted to producing and possessing the banned drug after police raided his house in Bristol | Daily Record, UK


International news

Global Drug Survey 2020

Welcome to GDS2020. Thank you for taking part and adding your experience to the world’s largest drug survey. Global Drug Survey (GDS) is independent and free from the influence of government funding or commercial interests. Funds we generate go into running the survey and creating free harm reduction tools | GDS, UK

British-Irish Council summit focuses on Brexit and tackling drug abuse

Political leaders from across the UK and Ireland have met in Dublin to discuss how to deal with “shared issues” such as Brexit and tackling drug abuse | ITV, UK

Britons who legally smoke cannabis in the US 'risk being deported'

Warning comes amid rise in expulsions under federal law – even in states where drug is legal | Guardian, UK

Michaella McCollum: Why I smuggled cocaine into Peru - audio

Michaella McCollum was just 20, when she was caught with 11 kilos of cocaine at the airport in Peru in 2013. Along with her Scottish accomplice, Melissa Reid, she spent almost three years behind bars there, before she was allowed to return home to Northern Ireland in 2016 | BBC, UK

Donald Trump backs away from proposal to ban flavored e-cigarettes as he fears a backlash from voters

It is understood POTUS is hesitant to press ahead with action on vaping as he fears suffering a backlash from voters, according to a report in The New York Times | Mail Online, UK

Apple bans vaping apps - audio

From today the Apple app store will no longer include vaping apps. We speak to technology journalist Ina Fried about what this might mean for the vaping industry, and whether Apple was right to ban them | BBC Business Matters, UK

‘We’re on the front line’: the teens pushing for flavored e-cigarettes ban

The Massachusetts state house passed a bill banning the products with an unlikely pressure group: suburban Boston teens outraged at the health damage | Guardian, UK

Australian man accused of deliberately lighting out-of-control fire to protect cannabis crop

Police allege man attempted to backburn to protect crop and hoped to benefit from government payments after blaze | Guardian, UK

Sharp increase in number of illegal drugs detected in parcels

There has been a sharp increase in the number of packets and parcels containing illegal drugs detected this year, with almost a doubling of seizures by Revenue so far in 2019. A record number of detections has uncovered almost €3m worth of controlled drugs weighing over half a tonne | Irish Examiner, Ireland

Irish Heart Foundation calls on State to ban e-cigarette advertising

The Government should ban all e-cigarette advertising in forthcoming Dáil legislation after a report found that e-cigarettes damage the brain, heart, blood vessels and lungs, the Irish Heart Foundation has said | Irish Times, Ireland

Vaping products on sale triple to over 5,300

Figures from the Department of Health show the number of new electronic cigarette and refill container products on the market have tripled in the past year — up from 1,538 in 2018 to 5,362 this year | Irish Times, Ireland

Germany aligns with EC in confirming novel food classification of CBD

Germany’s federal government now confirms that cannabidiol (CBD) is to be classified as novel food citing an absence of evidence of its consumption before 15 May 1997 | Food Navigator, USA

Cigarette Smoking Among U.S. Adults Hits All-Time Low

34.2 million adults still smoking and many using other tobacco products | CDC, USA

CDC, States Update Number of Cases of Lung Injury Associated with Use of E-cigarette, or Vaping, Products

As of November 13, 2019, there are 2,172 confirmed and probable lung injury cases associated with use of e-cigarette, or vaping, products were reported by 49 states | CDC, USA

Nicotine delivery different for different e-cigarettes finds study

A new study from Penn State College of Medicine researchers has shown that different electronic cigarettes or “electronic nicotine delivery system (ENDS)” have different rates of nicotine delivery to the users | News Medical, USA

Judge lowers opioid settlement to $465 million, blames error

An Oklahoma judge who had ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $572 million for its role in the opioid crisis on Friday reduced the figure to $465 million, after a miscalculation | Medical Xpress, USA

Association of Punitive and Reporting State Policies Related to Substance Use in Pregnancy With Rates of Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome

Are state punitive or reporting policies related to substance use during pregnancy associated with rates of neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS)? | JAMA Open, USA

Association of Disability With Mortality From Opioid Overdose Among US Medicare Adults

What is the rate of opioid overdose deaths among Medicare enrollees younger than 65 years who qualified for Medicare because of disability? | JAMA Open, USA

Side effects mild, brief with single antidepressant dose of intravenous ketamine

Safety data analyzed from five NIH inpatient clinical trials | NIHR, USA

How Wily Teens Outwit Bathroom Vape Detectors

Schools are shelling out thousands for vape detectors, yet students easily circumvent them. Teen vaping solutions need an educational component as well | WIRED, USA

Meth Has Many Medical Benefits. Stigma Holds Them Back

Ask your doctor about methamphetamine. It’s not a phrase you’ll ever hear on TV or the radio, but here’s a secret: Meth is an incredible medicine | Filter Magazine, USA

Where US Psychedelic Decriminalization Efforts Stand Right Now

The cities of Denver, Colorado and Oakland, California made history this spring by decriminalizing, respectively, psilocybin mushrooms and all federal Schedule I psychedelics. The movement has since picked up steam across the US. However, not all efforts have had equal success | Filter Magazine, USA

Seeing past the stigma

Since the Western world came across the South American plant genus Erythroxylum, the use of this multifaceted genus has been associated with the production of soft drinks, such as Coca Cola, or with the abuse of the purified plant substance in the form of the narcotic cocaine | EurekAlert, USA

DPA & Representatives from 51 Countries Stand Behind Efforts to ‘STOP THE KILLINGS’ in the Philippines at the International Drug Policy Reform Conference

Last week, at Drug Policy Alliance’s International Drug Policy Reform Conference, attendees from 51 countries protested the thousands of brutal killings that have taken place in the Philippines in the name of President Rodrigo Duterte’s drug war, gathering under cultural collective RESBAK’s iconic ‘Stop the Killings’ banner in a united show of opposition | DPA, USA

Children buying alcohol and cigarettes online without ID checks

Children as young as 12 are exploiting online delivery systems to have alcohol and cigarettes sent straight to their homes or local post offices, with one in three getting booze delivered without an ID check [See also article here] | SMH, Australia

Addiction specialist: Cannabis reform debate overshadows alcohol-related harm

According to the annual New Zealand Health Survey this week, one in five adult New Zealanders drank alcohol last year in a way that could hurt themselves or others | NZ Herald, New Zealand


Blogs, comment and opinion

Reassuring people entering treatment increases their chances of getting better

We’re exploring the first four weeks of drug and alcohol treatment. This is what we’ve learnt | Addaction blog, UK

A psychedelic retreat proves a healing trip

Exploring the therapeutic benefits of magic mushrooms at a ceremony in Amsterdam | Guardian, UK

Simon Harris: Supervised drug injection centres are about offering help rather than handcuffs

The Minister for Health says that the government must and will shoulder its responsibilities in this area | Journal, Ireland

Is There Really a Difference Between Drug Addiction and Drug Dependence?

It is no secret that misinformation about addiction is rampant in popular media. One particular area of misinformation concerns what language gets used when describing topics related to addiction | Scientific American, USA

ADHS at AHA at New York City (conference papers)

Free downloadable papers from the event | Points blog, USA