Daily news - 30th September 2019

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UK news

Health matters: rough sleeping

It has been estimated that around 35% of people who die whilst sleeping rough die due to alcohol or drugs, compared to 2% in the general population | PHE, UK

Depression and binge-drinking more common among military partners

New research from King’s College London suggests that depression and binge-drinking are more common among the female partners of UK military personnel than among comparable women outside the military community | KCL, UK

Drug seizures and arrests in Northern Ireland, period ending 31 March 2019

Finalised financial year statistics relating to class A, B and C drug seizure incidents and arrests by PSNI for the period 1 April 2018 - 31 March 2019 | Police Service of Northern Ireland and Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency, UK

Cocaine and alcohol a 'deadly combination'

Mixing cocaine and alcohol together creates a "deadly combination" which can increase violent and impulsive behaviour, doctors are warning | BBC, UK

Alcohol addiction: 'Why couldn't he kick the habit for me?'

In September 2016 at the Mater Hospital in Belfast I had to make a decision I never thought I would be faced with | BBC, UK

The truth about CBD

[Free access] Its makers aren’t allowed to trumpet its health benefits, so why is CBD seen as a cure-all by a growing legion of fans? | Sunday Times, UK

Government told to focus funding on tackling drugs in North Yorkshire

North Yorkshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Julia Mulligan said the government needed to recognise the scale of the phenomenon of city-based gangs targeting children and vulnerable adults, using coercion, intimidation, violence and weapons in the county | Northern Echo, UK

Llanfairpwll concern over drinking and drug-taking

A large group of teenagers, some as young as 14, drink and take drugs until the early hours of the morning in an Anglesey village, police have said | BBC, UK

Housing First and the Substance Misuse field - survey

The survey below is aimed at anyone whose main area of work is within the drug and alcohol field and should only take 5-10 minutes to complete | Homeless Link, UK

The homeless death of Kane Walker: how we let down the kid from care

Kane Walker 1987-2019: How did a childhood spent in the care system lead to the young man everybody loved dying under an overpass – and could a new law help? | Guardian, UK

Winchester prisoners 'at risk from drugs and self-harm'

A prison's inmates are at "serious risk" from the availability of drugs, high levels of self-harm and unfit buildings, a report has said | BBC, UK

Men guilty after 750kg of cocaine seized from boat in Fishguard

Two men have pleaded guilty to conspiracy to import cocaine after one of the largest hauls of the drug in UK history was found on board a boat | BBC, UK

Police seize £1.1m of drugs after Glasgow flat raid

Drugs with an estimated street value of £1.1m have been seized after police raided a flat in Glasgow | BBC, UK

Vietnamese gang leaders jailed over £6m cannabis haul

The ringleaders of a Vietnamese crime gang have been jailed after police seized 2.5 tonnes of cannabis worth about £6m in raids across south Wales | BBC, UK

Police raid cannabis den as part of £6m haul

This is the moment police raided a drug den in the Cynon Valley which led to the downfall of a gang in south Wales | BBC, UK


International news

A ‘smart’ solution to problem cannabis use?

Cannabis is the most widely used illicit drug in Europe, and though many seemingly enjoy it without experiencing significant negative social or health effects, numbers entering treatment have been rising. For people motivated to reduce or quit their use of cannabis, could a smartphone app provide a promising alternative to a face-to-face intervention? | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

Can Technology Solve the Opioid Crisis? - video

Seventy thousand Americans are dying each year from drug overdoses. Two-thirds are the result of opioid addiction. Technology companies have been accused of helping facilitate the illicit sale of drugs online, but are they really to blame? | BBC, UK

Keep calm and vape on: UK embraces e-cigarettes, US cautious

While the U.S. scrambles to crack down on vaping, Britain has embraced electronic cigarettes as a powerful tool to help smokers kick the habit | Medical Xpress, UK

Lung disease from vaping may hit Britain, says expert

Public Health England accused of playing down the dangers of e-cigarettes as a purely American phenomenon | Guardian, UK

How e-cigarettes went from celebrity accessory to product non grata

Several states have enacted a ban on sales of vaping products amid more than 800 reports of lung injuries nationwide | Guardian, UK

Legal weed faces its first crisis as vaping deaths spark health scare

Cannabis vape sales sink amid questions over illness apparently associated with THC and nicotine products | Guardian, UK

Pot and pans? Italian TV chef on cannabis charge was 'researching new flavours'

Police find cannabis-flavoured wine, olives, coffee and tuna at home of Sicilian celebrity chef Carmelo Chiaramonte | BBC, UK

Alcohol set to be subsidised and more available at 2022 World Cup in Qatar

Organisers of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar are close to a deal that would lead to alcohol being subsidised and more readily available during the tournament. However, they have also urged England fans to “bridge the cultural gap” by being on their best behaviour if their team qualifies | Guardian, UK

Botswana players axed for drinking alcohol

Botswana coach Adel Amrouche has axed four players from his squad, to face Liberia in a friendly in Gaborone on Monday, for drinking alcohol | BBC, UK

Russia bans smoking on apartment balconies

Russian smokers have been left gasping after the emergencies ministry announced that smoking on the balconies of apartment blocks would be banned under new fire regulations | BBC, UK

'Evolution, not revolution': ACT cannabis users chilled about legalisation

While some have concerns over the move – a first for Australia – the territory isn’t expecting things to change all that much | Guardian, UK

Sydney lockout laws should be scrapped in CBD but remain in Kings Cross, inquiry says

NSW premier Gladys Berejiklian has already indicated her willingness to repeal most of the restrictions | Guardian, UK

Research shows intentional drug overdose is most common reason homeless people present at hospitals

A conference heard that street drugs are three times more common in intentional drug overdose scenarios involving homeless people than compared to those in a fixed residence | Irish Examiner, Ireland

'We're going to lose a generation': The cocaine epidemic in the west of Ireland and the garda response

Gardaí are relying on bouncers outside local pubs to act as intelligence sources | Journal, Ireland

Monitoring the elimination of viral hepatitis as a public health threat among people who inject drugs in Europe

This technical report focuses on an elimination barometer for viral hepatitis to help countries assess progress towards eliminating hepatitis C and B among people who inject drugs (PWID). The barometer is being developed by the EMCDDA together with its expert network on drug-related infectious diseases (DRID), as a follow-up to the first global health sector strategy on viral hepatitis endorsed by the World Health Assembly in 2016 | EMCDDA, Portugal

THC Products May Play a Role in Outbreak of Lung Injury Associated with E-cigarette Use, or Vaping

Investigation ongoing, no single product linked to all cases, but patterns emerge | CDC, USA

Harmful metals found in vapors from tank-style electronic cigarettes

A team of scientists at the University of California, Riverside, has found the concentration of metals in electronic cigarette aerosols—or vapor—has increased since tank-style electronic cigarettes were introduced in 2013 | Medical Xpress, USA

Researchers examine causes, effects, treatments for alcohol use disorder

New research from Regents' Professor Katie Witkiewitz at The University of New Mexico Department of Psychology and Center on Alcoholism, Substance Abuse, and Addictions examines alcohol use disorder, the physical and economic toll it takes, and effective treatments that are now available | Medical Xpress, USA

Alcohol Consumption and Risk of Dementia and Cognitive Decline Among Older Adults With or Without Mild Cognitive Impairment

 These findings suggest that physicians caring for older adults need to carefully assess the full dimensions of drinking behavior and cognition when providing guidance to patients about their alcohol consumption | JAMA Open, USA

CCSA Annual Report

​This year, CCSA streamlined its annual report to better illustrate the impact we made with our work. Evidence in Action, our annual report for 2018–2019, emphasizes key results and achievements by the Centre in the last fiscal year | CCSA, Canada

Report recommends massive overhaul of Sydney nightlife, including scrapping of lockout laws

Shots and strong drinks would flow all night and Sydney's lockout laws would be scrapped everywhere except Kings Cross if recommendations from a report into the city's economy after dark are adopted | abc.net.au, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

‘Untreated help seekers’ in addictions deserve attention in future research

Dr Sadie Boniface and Prof Sir John Strang discuss the need for research to focus attention on those who present only for an initial appointment at drug and alcohol services | IAS blog, UK