Daily news - 28th November 2019

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UK news

Substance misuse treatment for young people: statistics 2018 to 2019

These statistics will be released on Today at 9:30am | PHE, UK

Scottish Schools Adolescent Lifestyle and Substance Use Survey (SALSUS): national overview 2018

Overview of findings on alcohol, drug use and smoking from the 2018 wave of the Scottish Schools Adolescent Lifestyle and Substance Use Survey (SALSUS) | Scottish Government, UK

Drinking on rise again among Scottish teenagers

The numbers of 13 and 15-year-olds who had tried alcohol had been steadily falling since 2004. But the latest figures showed an increase in the proportion who said they had ever had alcohol, been drunk, or drank alcohol in the previous week | BBC, UK

Ketamine dose to reduce heavy drinking shows promise

In an experimental study, researchers used a single injection of the drug ketamine to disrupt the pleasurable memories that heavy drinkers associated with drinking alcohol | NHS Behind the Headlines, UK

Edinburgh office staff given self-service alcohol area

Workers in an Edinburgh New Town office block are to be given access to self-service alcohol pumps. City of Edinburgh councillors approved the plan from We Work Community Workspace for their premises on George Street | BBC, UK

Drug-drivers targeted in festive drink-drive campaign

Police Scotland has launched its annual campaign against drink-driving - with drug-drivers also being targeted | BBC, UK

Prescription of benzodiazepines, z-drugs, and gabapentinoids and mortality risk in people receiving opioid agonist treatment: Observational study based on the UK Clinical Practice Research Datalink and Office for National Statistics death records

[Open access] Patients with opioid dependency prescribed opioid agonist treatment (OAT) may also be prescribed sedative drugs. This may increase mortality risk but may also increase treatment duration, with overall benefit. We hypothesised that prescription of benzodiazepines in patients receiving OAT would increase risk of mortality overall, irrespective of any increased treatment duration | PLOS Medicine, UK

'My drink was spiked on my second day at university' - video

Lily Petch arrived at university ready for a new adventure but says her drink was spiked on just her second night | BBC, UK

MSP calls for urgent action after three 'drugs' deaths

An MSP has called for urgent action to tackle Dundee's drug problem after the deaths of three people at the weekend | STV, UK

Guardian Public Service Awards: public health and wellbeing winner

An integrated project is helping people in the West Midlands with alcohol dependence | Guardian, UK

Guardian Public Service Awards: digital innovation winner

Most high street stores run some kind of special offer, whether it is buy one get one free or “sign up for triple points”. The charity WDP had that kind of incentive scheme in mind when creating its capital card | Guardian, UK

'Drug Checking Is Just One Piece Of The Jigsaw': Q's With Professor of Criminology Fiona Measham

The UK Festival Awards will present this year’s Outstanding Contribution to Festivals Award to Professor Fiona Measham, Chair in Criminology at the University OF Liverpool, academic, author, yoga teacher, salsa dancer, qualified door supervisor, avid club-goer, and founder of The Loop, a non-profit NGO dedicated to reducing the harm caused by drug use at music events and beyond | Pollstar, UK

HMP Berwyn drug death prisoner 'didn't want to be here'

A prisoner who died after taking the drug Spice in prison had told a nurse he "didn't want to be here any longer", an inquest has heard | BBC, UK

Man jailed after drugs posted from Canada to Manchester

A man who had cocaine and cannabis posted to his UK home from Canada has been jailed | BBC, UK


International news

Criminals gearing up for Black Friday with deals on illegal goods

Criminals on the dark web are gearing up for Black Friday, with special offers on illegal drugs, fake identity documents and stolen data | ITV, UK

Police in Spain find three tonnes of cocaine in 'narco-submarine'

Drugs seized from vessel intercepted off coast of Galicia could be worth €100m | Guardian, UK

Trump plan to label Mexico cartels as terror groups defies logic, experts say

Analysts say designation would be largely cosmetic as the already illegitimate groups are driven by money, not politics | Guardian, UK

Massachusetts bans sale of flavored vaping and tobacco products

New law signed by Republican governor will also outlaw menthol cigarettes and places a 75% excise tax on e-cigarettes | Guardian, UK

Sydney 'lockout' laws: Australian city ends controversial bar curfews

Controversial laws blamed for ruining nightlife in Australia's largest city, Sydney, will be almost completely scrapped from January, officials say | BBC, UK

'THEY.ARE.WASTED': Wellington poster campaign aims to prevent sexual assault

Consent campaign in New Zealand capital uses slogan: ‘Don’t guess the yes’ | Guardian, UK

Harris criticises drinks industry role in educating schoolchildren about alcohol

New HSE resource aims to improve pupils’ knowledge about risks of alcohol and drugs | Irish Times, Ireland

Characteristics of E-cigarette, or Vaping, Products Used by Patients with Associated Lung Injury and Products Seized by Law Enforcement — Minnesota, 2018 and 2019

Illicit THC-containing products submitted by 11 of 12 EVALI patients in Minnesota contained vitamin E acetate. Twenty THC-containing products seized during September 2019 contained vitamin E acetate; ten products seized during 2018, before the EVALI outbreak, did not contain vitamin E acetate | CDC, USA

Drugmakers, distributors facing federal opioid probe

At least a half-dozen companies that make or distribute prescription opioid painkillers are facing a federal criminal investigation over whether they violated federal law as they shipped more drugs amid the growing nationwide addiction and overdose crisis | Medical Xpress, USA

Study highlights 'worrying' increase in misuse of non-opioid medications

A major new analysis of the non-opioid medications, gabapentin and baclofen, shows "worrying" increases in related suicide attempts and hospital admissions in US adults since 2013—coinciding with a decrease in opioid prescriptions | Medical Xpress, USA

Stigma as a fundamental hindrance to the United States opioid overdose crisis response

The current US opioid overdose crisis is a public health emergency. The age-adjusted mortality rate due to drug overdose more than tripled from 1999 to 2017  | PLOS Medicine, USA

Opioid agonist treatment scale-up and the initiation of injection drug use: A dynamic modeling analysis

Injection drug use (IDU) is associated with multiple health harms. The vast majority of IDU initiation events (in which injection-naïve persons first adopt IDU) are assisted by a person who injects drugs (PWID), and as such, IDU could be considered as a dynamic behavioral transmission process | PLOS Medicine, USA

Heavy and binge alcohol drinking and parenting status in the United States from 2006 to 2018: An analysis of nationally representative cross-sectional surveys

This study demonstrated that trends in binge and heavy drinking over time were not differential by parenting status for women; rather, declines and increases over time were mainly attributable to sex and age | PLOS Medicine, USA

Leveraging crowdsourcing methods to collect qualitative data in addiction science: Narratives of non-medical prescription opioid, heroin, and fentanyl use

Online crowdsourcing methods have proved useful for studies of diverse designs in the behavioral and addiction sciences. The remote and online setting of crowdsourcing research may provide easier access to unique participant populations and improved comfort for these participants in sharing sensitive health or behavioral information | IJDP, USA

Association Between Marijuana Use and Risk of Cancer: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis

This systematic review and meta-analysis identified 25 English-language studies assessing marijuana use and the risk for developing lung, head and neck, urogenital, and other cancers. In meta-analyses, regular marijuana use was associated with development of testicular germ cell tumors, although the strength of evidence was low; evidence regarding other cancers was insufficient | JAMA Network Open, USA

Supervised injection facility use and all-cause mortality among people who inject drugs in Vancouver, Canada: A cohort study

Although previous studies have demonstrated the role of supervised injection facilities (SIFs) in reducing various harms associated with injection drug use, including accidental overdose death, the possible impact of SIF use on all-cause mortality is unknown. Therefore, we examined the relationship between frequent SIF use and all-cause mortality among PWID in Vancouver, Canada | PLOS Medicine, Canada


Blogs, comment and opinion

Vaping poses serious threat to children

Warren Lenney and 15 other paediatric healthcare professionals sound the alarm over e-cigarettes and call for the urgent education of young people on their dangers | Guardian letters, UK

Vaping, smoking and young people

Louise Ross points to some of the beneficial effects of switching from smoking to vaping | Guardian letters, UK

Addressing the context and consequences of substance use, misuse, and dependence: A global imperative

Substance use, misuse, and dependence contribute immensely to the global burden of disease. Their harms extend far beyond their corrosive effects on health, safety, and wellbeing and additionally include those associated with healthcare expenditures, productivity losses, criminal justice involvement, and other negative effects on social welfare | PLOS Medicine editorial, USA

Ten emerging drug trends in 2019

These trends are identified from the 2019 Ecstasy and Related Drugs Reporting System (EDRS) interviews with people who regularly use ecstasy and related illicit stimulants, and the Illicit Drug Reporting System (IDRS) interviews with people who regularly inject drugs. Drug Trends also draw on reporting from other Australian data sources (e.g., drug-induced deaths) that form part of the national illicit drug surveillance system | NDARC blog, Australia