Daily news - 25th October 2019

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UK news

UK wide summit announced to tackle drug deaths

The UK government has announced a summit focused on tackling problem drug use that will bring together a variety of experts from across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland | Home Office, UK

Minimum pricing for alcohol: research into potential consequences

Research into the perceptions of service providers and service users on the potential consequences of introducing a minimum price for alcohol | Welsh Government, UK

Potentially serious alcohol–medication interactions and falls in community-dwelling older adults: a prospective cohort study 

[Open access] To investigate the association between potentially serious alcohol–medication interactions (POSAMINO criteria), hypothesised to increase the risk of falls in older adults, and falls in community-dwelling older adults at two and 4 years follow-up | Age and Aging, UK

How Britain became socially liberal in just 30 years

In 1989, 60% said the use of soft drugs such as cannabis was morally wrong, now down to 29% in 2019. Even the use of hard drugs such as heroin is now less likely to be seen as immoral: 89% said it was immoral in 1989, down to 67% today | KCL, UK

Cannabis: Medical Treatments

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many prescriptions for medical cannabis have been issued on the NHS since the rescheduling of cannabis-based products | They work for you, UK

‘Heartwarming’ festival tackling drug addiction stigma held for first time in Dundee

The city’s first-ever Hope Festival, held at the Steeple Church, was designed to tackle the hurtful stigma surrounding addiction that exists in society | Courier, UK

Police powers and procedures, England and Wales, year ending 31 March 2019 (PDF)

This release contains statistics on the use of various police powers in England and Wales up to the year ending 31 March 2019. The stop and search section contains information provided by the 43 police forces in England and Wales, and the British Transport Police (BTP), on a financial-year basis | Home Office, UK

Stop and search up by almost a third in England and Wales

Police use tactic 370,454 times in year to March – up from 279,728 in previous 12 months | Guardian, UK

Pub licensing hours to be extended for VE Day

Priti Patel, the Home Secretary, announced that pubs, clubs and bars which are licensed to trade until 11pm will be allowed to open until 1am on both Friday 8 May and Saturday 9 May 2020 | Telegraph, UK

Vagina museum gets alcohol licence despite hen and stag party fears

Residents in Camden worry display could attract rowdy revellers | Guardian, UK

Gambling Commission publishes the 2019 Young People and Gambling report

The survey looks at those forms of gambling and gambling style games that young people legally* take part in along with gambling on age restricted products | Gambling Commission, UK


International news

Launch of Injecting Drug User Implementation Tool Training Manual

INPUD is very excited to launch the Injecting Drug User Implementation Tool Training Manual and accompanying slides | INPUD, UK

The health scare stories that are making some vapers return to cigarettes

A study from the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has sparked fresh cause for alarm over the potential health risks of e-cigarettes. As of 15 October the organisation had identified 1,479 cases of vaping-related lung disease in US patients, including 33 recorded deaths | i news, UK

The 'peasant' binge drinker who went global - and what it says about modern China

What do you get when you mix a pint of beer, a can of Pepsi, a huge glass of flaming spirits, and a raw egg? | BBC, UK

Two workers for Melbourne injecting room charged with drug trafficking

Reason Party MP Fiona Patten says the medically-supervised injecting room should remain open because it’s ‘saving lives’ | Guardian, UK

Night cafe shelter sees record demand

The “greatest risk” facing Ireland is accepting high levels of homelessness and addiction “as normality”, according to a leading charity. Merchants Quay Ireland (MQI) experienced a surge in demand across its services last year, with record numbers seeking emergency shelter in its night cafe in Dublin | Irish Examiner, Ireland

HSE drug testing plans fail to get Garda green light

The HSE put separate proposals to An Garda Síochána to run pilot drug testing services at two music festivals this summer, but failed to get the green light for either, the Irish Examiner can reveal | Irish Examiner, Ireland

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

As of October 22, 2019, 1,604 confirmed and probable lung injury cases associated with use of e-cigarette, or vaping, products were reported by 49 states (all except Alaska), the District of Columbia, and the U.S. Virgin Islands | CDC, USA

Bernie Sanders debuts plan at 4:20 pm to legalize marijuana

2020 presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) released a proposal precisely at 4:20 pm on Thursday to legalize marijuana at the federal level, per a campaign email | AXIOS, USA

Flavors attract both youth and adults to use e-cigarettes

As more and more youth use electronic cigarettes, combined with research showing the health consequences of vaping - including nicotine addiction - researchers at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill found that non-menthol flavors attract youth and adults to use e-cigarettes and that the use of flavored e-cigarettes contributes to multiple pathways linked to higher e-cigarette use among youth | News Medical, USA


Blogs, comment and opinion

The global drug problem: who cares? #LxAddictions19

Having status means you are more likely to be heard, so when the Lancet publishes a special report on global drug use and the need for a new approach there is a good chance this report will receive attention. The same status is not enjoyed by people who use drugs, a clear theme in the report | Mental Elf blog, UK

Safe injection rooms save lives – yet the UK government continues to oppose them

Urgent action is needed to stem the UK’s overdose crisis, according to a group of cross party MPs, who have called upon the government to properly tackle the issue. Drug-related deaths rose to record numbers in 2018 in England and Wales. A total of 4,359 people died due to drug poisoning – over half of them related to opiate use | Conversation, UK

This week's MP’s report is another call for an evidence-led public health-based drugs policy

This week, Parliament’s Health and Social Care Committee (HSSC) published a new report which concluded like many others before it, that UK drug policy is failing. This is a sentiment which is also echoed by the majority of the British public | CDPRG blog, UK

Statement on the dangers posed by E-cigarettes

Drug Science stands by its E-cigarette analysis from 2014, any way of radically reducing the death toll from tobacco would be a worldwide public health triumph. E-cigarettes are not the solution to end the ever-increasing death toll caused by tobacco. However, they have proven to be an incredibly effective tool for tens of thousands of UK smokers who want to quit | Drug Science, UK

Runner’s high: the well-trodden road of swapping drugs and alcohol for exercise

From marathon binges to marathon running, here’s why former substance users find release in hitting the pavement | Guardian, UK

‘My friends are taking MDMA at raves and music festivals. Is it safe?’

Ecstasy is a slang term for drugs meant to contain 3,4- methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), a stimulant that can also cause mild hallucinations at high doses | Conversation, Australia