Daily news - 27th January 2020

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UK news

Date set for UK-wide summit in Glasgow on tackling drug misuse

The UK government has set the date for its Glasgow summit on tackling drug misuse as 27 February 2020 | Department of Health and Social Care, Home Office, and Kit Malthouse MP, UK

Drug deaths summit to take place in Glasgow

A UK-wide summit on tackling problem drug use will be held in Glasgow next month, it has been announced | BBC, UK

Addiction: Heroin users 'need quicker prescriptions access'

Researchers spoke to 60 users across Wales sourcing their own medication, including heroin substitutes, with many saying they were hard to get from their GP | BBC, UK

Heroin and cocaine can be injected safely in UK's first 'mock drugs room'

Supervisors are on-hand to administer life-saving drugs should someone overdose | ITV, UK

Naloxone impact: Sharp rise in use of overdose-reversing drug

The number of times Northern Ireland's ambulance service administered a drug to reverse overdoses has risen by 40% since 2017, official figures show | BBC, UK

Efforts to tackle tobacco harm explored by experts

The impact of the tobacco display ban on young people's attitudes to smoking has been analysed by University of Stirling experts. The five-year public health study also looked at the effect of the ban on young people's exposure to point-of-sale tobacco promotions and the likelihood of them taking up smoking - as well as the potential for e-cigarettes to influence smoking initiation | EurekAlert, UK

Scots university in talks to trial controversial N.E.T addiction treatment

A Scottish university is in talks to launch a major new clinical trial of a controversial electrical brain therapy that promises to wean drug addicts off everything from heroin to nicotine with no cravings or side effects | Herald, UK

Drinking motivations in UK serving and ex-serving military personnel 

Amongst military personnel with a stress, emotional or mental health problem, those who drink to cope with mental disorder symptoms or because of social pressure, in addition to those who drink at home or drink alone, are more likely to also drink excessively | Occupational Medicine, UK

Cannabis: Medical Treatments

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many prescriptions for medical cannabis were issued by the NHS in 2019 | They work for you, UK

Stop persecuting sick people for using medicinal cannabis, demands police boss

North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner Arfon Jones has written to the head of the Crown Prosecution Service in Wales asking for a guarantee that sick people will not be hauled before the courts for trying to alleviate their conditions | Deeside.com, UK

Wetherspoon pubs ban parents from buying more than two alcoholic drinks if they’re with their kids

The nationwide policy came to light when a poster was put up at the Robert Pocock pub in Gravesend, Kent following an incident of "unruly behaviour" | The Sun, UK

Drugs deaths marked by forget-me-nots in Bristol

Families who have lost a loved one to a drugs overdose have placed thousands of handmade flowers in a temporary flowerbed in their memory | BBC, UK

16 jails to receive X-ray scanners

Tough new security measures will be introduced at 16 of the most challenging jails – a major part of the government’s crackdown on crime behind bars | Ministry of Justice and Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service, UK

Public Houses: West Midlands

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps her Department is taking to prevent pub closures in the West Midlands | They work for you, UK

Convicted drug dealer takes fight to clear name to Court of Appeal

A convicted drug dealer who has always proclaimed his innocence will take the fight to clear his name to the Court of Appeal | Justice Gap, UK

Alcohol 'factor' in teen's Bristol Harbour drowning

Avon Coroner's Court heard he was one-and-a-half times the legal drink-drive limit, and it was a "significant contributing factor" in his death | BBC, UK

Men jailed for growing cannabis on Devon farm

Two cannabis growers who set up an industrial-scale operation at a smallholding in the countryside have been jailed for two years | BBC, UK

Bradford county lines drugs gang 'forced son to leave home'

A boy is being forced to move away from his Bradford home after being "groomed" into organised crime linked to "county lines" drug dealing, his family said | BBC, UK

Southampton paramedics find man stealing drugs from ambulance

A thief broke into an ambulance and stole drugs as paramedics were treating a patient nearby | BBC, UK



International news

Thailand police auction off car packed with almost 100,000 meth pills

Nations drug chief says pills with street value of around £180,000 had been ‘well hidden’ | Independent, UK

Iran executes 'Crocodile of the Gulf' drug kingpin

Iran has executed a drug kingpin nicknamed the "Crocodile of the Persian Gulf" and dismantled his smuggling ring, state media report | BBC, UK

'If someone goes under, call 999': Addiction expert warns about GHB after more overdoses

The drug has been making headlines after more overdoses last weekend and a high-profile rape case | Journal, Ireland

Vitamin E acetate in products used by the first cases of EVALI in New York State

A new study published on 24 January 2020 in the journal Toxics provides important insight into the recent lung intoxication epidemic referred to as "e-cigarette or vaping product use-associated lung injury" (EVALI). The study presents, for the first time, a comprehensive analysis of products used by EVALI patients | EurekAlert, USA

The Legal Smoking Age In The US Is Changing To 21

The number of teens using e-cigarettes has nearly doubled from last year | BuzzFeed, USA

Pharmaceutical Executive John Kapoor Sentenced To 66 Months In Prison In Opioid Trial

Former billionaire and pharmaceutical executive John Kapoor has been sentenced to five years and six months in prison. His sentencing is the culmination of a months-long criminal trial in Boston's Moakley U.S. Courthouse that resulted in the first successful prosecution of pharmaceutical executives tied to the opioid epidemic | npr, USA

Researchers identify a connection between early life adversity and opioid addiction

Individuals with a history of early life adversity (ELA) are disproportionately prone to opioid addiction. A new UCI-led study reveals why | Medical Xpress, USA

Advanced practice registered nurses to have a greater role in national response to opioid epidemic

As we enter a new year and a new decade, many states have enacted legislation affecting the roles of advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) in terms of practice authority, reimbursement, and prescriptive authority... | Medical Xpress, USA

Risk of Persistence and Progression of Use of 5 Cannabis Products After Experimentation Among Adolescents

The rate of persistence and progression after experimentation among adolescents may be amplified with the use of cannabis concentrate compared with other cannabis products | JAMA, USA

US Finally Condemns and Sanctions Philippines Drug Warriors

Philippines officials involved in the country’s bloody drug war and a subsequent crackdown on opposition are finally facing official condemnation and repercussions from the United States | Filter Magazine, USA

New research shows more people knowingly use fentanyl, points to importance of comprehensive response to reduce risks

Fentanyl use by people who use drugs in B.C. has doubled since 2015, and two-thirds of people are aware they’ve taken it, finds new research from the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) | BCCDC, Canada

One day, four overdose deaths: Ontario city struggles as opioid crisis marches on

One was a burger-joint chef who loved to skateboard when he was growing up. One was a big truck driver with striking blue eyes. Another was the father of four kids. Another was famous for his devotion to his dog, Rocco | Globe and Mail, Canada

Estimation of the proportion of population cannabis consumption in Australia that is accounted for by daily users using Monte Carlo Simulation

Between 2007 and 2016, only one in six Australian cannabis users were daily users, but they accounted for more than 80% of the estimated cannabis consumed in Australia | Addiction, Australia

Australia Day list honours UNSW leaders

Professor Alison Ritter, Director of the Drug Policy Modelling Program at UNSW’s Social Policy Research Centre, has been appointed as an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) “for distinguished service to education, to drug and alcohol research and social policy, and to professional medical societies” | UNSW, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Expert reaction to World Health Organisation Q&A on electronic cigarettes

The World Health Organisation (WHO) have run a Q&A via their website on electronic cigarettes | Science Media Centre, UK

Nick Hopkinson: Health inequality in the new decade—we need a new strategy

The general answer I think must be to focus intensely on the actual mechanisms linking deprivation to adverse health outcomes and prioritise tackling them where they are amenable to intervention. The obvious example is smoking, which is responsible for half the difference in life expectancy between rich and poor | BMJ Opinion, UK

Big Tobacco wants social media influencers to promote its products – can the platforms stop it?

Big Tobacco likes to stay ahead of the curve – it has to in order to survive. Its fundamental problem is that one in two of its long-term users die from tobacco-related diseases. To hook a new generation into addiction, it has to try every advertising and marketing trick in its playbook | Conversation, UK

'At 9 I starting becoming addicted to drugs. 42 years later, I've turned my life around'

For years, my life just spiralled out of control. Now I'm on the other side, I can see it was never together anyways' | i news, UK

'I gave up drinking after I cheated on my partner'

As Brits weigh up their alcohol intake for Dry January, Vikki tells the story of her difficult relationship with drinking | BBC 3, UK

Clare Kelly: What makes a Scotch a Scotch?

As one of Scotland’s biggest exports, Scotch Whisky accounts for around 70 per cent of Scottish food and drink export | Scottish Legal News, UK