Daily news - 29th January 2020

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UK news

Knocked Back: failing to support people sleeping rough with drug and alcohol problems is costing lives

New research reveals at least 12,000 people experiencing homelessness missed out on vital drug and alcohol services last year | St Mungo's, UK

12,000 homeless people missing out on vital drug and alcohol treatment as preventable deaths soar, report finds

Thousands of homeless people are missing out on vital drug and alcohol treatment as preventable deaths soar, according to new research that has prompted warnings of a “health crisis on the streets” | Independent, UK

Smoking prevalence in adults - current smokers aged 18 to 64 by socio - economic group

Detailed ad-hoc analysis of smoking prevalence, calculated from the Annual Population Survey | PHE, UK

Drinking alcohol during pregnancy: #DRYMESTER the only safe approach

Drinking alcohol during pregnancy leads to poorer cognitive functioning in children, according to the most comprehensive review on the issue to date. The University of Bristol research published today [29 January] in the International Journal of Epidemiology, reviewed 23 published studies on the topic and found evidence that drinking in pregnancy could also lead to lower birthweight | University of Bristol, UK

Nasal spray medicine for treatment-resistant depression not recommended by NICE

More evidence on the clinical and cost effectiveness of esketamine needed | NICE, UK

Addiction February 2020 - key findings

This is a quick summary of the main discovery for each research paper we have published, organized issue by issue. Each key finding is below the article title, with a link to the abstract | Addiction, UK

Spotlight on Science: The Great Vape Debate - event

Mon, 10 February 2020. 18:00 – 19:30 GMT. The Curve Lecture Theatre, Ground Floor, Hunter Wing, St George's, University of London. Cranmer Terrace, London SW17 0RE. E-cigarette use continues to grow, with 3.6 million people in Great Britain currently vaping. The devices can help people to stop smoking conventional cigarettes but what do we really know about the health effects of vaping? Should there be more regulation of vape solutions and e-cigarette use? | St George's, University of London, UK


International news

MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD approved by FDA

The non-profit Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) was recently granted application for an Expanded Access Program for MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) | Health Europa, UK

Psilocybin: Magic mushroom compound provides anti-anxiety effect that lasts years, study finds

The psychedelic compound reduced anxiety and depression in cancer patients, as well as improved their attitudes toward death | Sky News, UK

European Gun Makers Are Quietly Supplying the Mexican Drug Wars

Companies in Italy, Belgium, and Romania are arming Mexican soldiers, cops, and cartels alike | VICE, UK

EMCDDA Director presents EU Drug Markets Report 2019 at European Parliament — ‘a clear wake-up call for policymakers’

EMCDDA Director Alexis Goosdeel was at the European Parliament today, where he presented the findings of the EMCDDA–Europol EU Drug Markets Report 2019 (EDMR 2019) to the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) | EMCDDA, Portugal

CDC, States Update Number of Hospitalized EVALI Cases and EVALI Deaths

As of Jan. 21, 2020, 2,711 cases of hospitalized EVALI or deaths were reported by all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and 2 U.S. territories (Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands) | CDC, USA

Pulmonary imaging key to diagnosing vaping-related lung damage

In 2019, the emergence of mysterious lung disease in the United States has sparked global health attention. Now named as the e-cigarette, or vaping, product use–associated lung injury (EVALI), the disease causes lung damage, which is a serious and sometimes fatal complication of vaping | News Medical, USA

Could a Naloxone Implant Have a Major Impact on the Overdose Crisis?

Researchers in Illinois are developing a novel device to rapidly and automatically administer the opioid overdose antidote naloxone. Smaller than a pacemaker, it would be implanted in a person’s body. When it detects signs of an overdose, it would release naloxone—and even place a 911 call | Filter Magazine, USA

The Formidable Challenge of Understanding Pain

Whether you consider opioids to be the gold standard for treating pain or a last resort, they do the job immensely well. That hasn’t changed | Filter Magazine, USA

Vancouver health agency floats $6 million take-home drug plan for addicts

Push for 'safe supply' of drugs mirrors fight to open Insite drug injection site | Vancouver Courier, Canada

A bold plan to help more Australians to quit smoking

The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) has today recommended allowing greater flexibility in prescribing for smoking cessation pharmacotherapy | RACGP, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

One month alcohol-free - what's happening in your body?

You’ve completed your dry month, but what’s been happening with your body over the last week? Read on to find out... | Alcohol Change UK, UK

Could psychedelics help us resolve the climate crisis?

In recent years there has been a resurgent scientific interest in the psychological effects of psychedelic drugs. Consider the example of recent trials in which psilocybin was administered to people diagnosed with treatment-resistant depression. Those involved reported significantly positive responses even six months later | Conversation, UK

Hold my non-alcoholic beer – An Irishman’s Diary on a baffling conundrum

Here’s a game, beloved by me and probably hardly anyone else, that I play in various mini-marts throughout the South Kildare constituency | Irish Times opinion, Ireland

Are we making progress or stuck in neutral with the opioid crisis?

Today's opioid crisis requires no introduction. The deaths, costs and subsequent lawsuits have become front-page articles for many publications and news outlets. As awareness of the problem has increased, Congress has attempted to positively intervene by reducing legislative barriers and improving funding | The Hill opinion, USA

Taking root: How Canada’s first student recovery community is growing at UBC

There were zero student recovery communities across the country, until Fudjack spearheaded the Student Recovery Community at UBC establishment in fall 2019 | Ubyssey, Canada

Non-Alcoholic Alcohol: Another cynical ploy by the alcohol industry?

More and more alcohol companies have started creating alcohol alternatives. These are products such as Heineken 0.0 and Carlton Zero; they are produced by major alcohol companies, contain no or low amounts of alcohol, and mimic the taste and look of their alcoholic counterparts. You may have recently seen their ads plastered across busses and spruiked on the radio | DrinkTank blog, Australia