Daily news - 27th May 2020

Weekly subscribe button

Coronavirus frequently updated resources

COVID-19 and addiction: webinars, podcasts and online discussions | SSA

Treatment and recovery services – and COVID-19 |Collective Voice

COVID-19 Information Hub | Scottish Drugs Forum

COVID-19 and smoking: resources, research and news | BMJ

Coronavirus: information and advice hub - alcohol | Alcohol Change UK

COVID-19 resources page for people who use drugs (PWUD) and drug service providers | EMCDDA


UK news

Needle and drug click-and-collect service set up by treatment charity

An online click-and-collect service for needles and drug equipment has been set up by a national treatment charity as the sector seeks to adapt to the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic | Guardian, UK

Evaluating the impact of alcohol minimum unit pricing in Scotland: Observational study of small retailers

The Scottish Government’s minimum unit pricing policy has been implemented as intended by small retailers in Scotland, according to new research carried out by the University of Stirling | University of Stirling, UK

British newborn first baby in world to join cannabis therapy trial

Norwich hospital in Europe-wide trial using plant ingredients to counter risk of seizures and brain injury | Guardian, UK

Coronavirus: Lockdown leaves addicts 'close to relapse'

It is not just shops and hospitality businesses that have had to close their doors during lockdown. Social-distancing restrictions have also made it difficult for many counselling services to operate | BBC, UK

‘A chaotic cycle of abuse and crime’: The truth behind prescription drugs and prisons

The picture we have of the prison estate’s drug epidemic is far from complete and, crucially, overlooks the policy of prescribing and dispensing synthetically-produced opiates for addicted inmates | Independent, UK

The treatment organisation is the healing context

Key research on how alcohol treatment organisations create an environment affecting whether staff and patients realise their potential. Introduces the resource which has done most to promote evidence-based improvements in treatment organisations, highlights “Exceptionally seminal” British studies from the early 1970s, and explores what makes a service engaging and effective and how best to organise extended care | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

Scientists say strong cannabis could help prevent or treat coronavirus

A team of scientists from Canada’s University of Lethbridge believe that strong strains of cannabis can be used to prevent or treat infection from coronavirus, also known as COVID-19 | MixMag, UK

Jaden Moodie: 'Chances missed' to protect boy groomed by dealers

A boy who was "butchered" in a drugs turf war after being groomed by drug dealers had been arrested in a crack den months earlier but police did not contact child exploitation staff, a report has found | BBC, UK

Pizza lorry driver denies 'smuggling drugs worth £6.5m'

A driver has denied smuggling cocaine and heroin worth more than £6.5 million in a lorry transporting pizzas from Italy | BBC, UK

Purfleet drugs seizure: Cocaine with street value of £10m found

A "huge" amount of cocaine with a street value of more than £10m has been found at an industrial property | BBC, UK


International news

Law firms look to launch landmark strip-search class action against NSW police

Lawyers say legal action could help ensure legislative change in New South Wales | Guardian, UK

Drugnet Ireland

Latest news, policy and publications from the EMCDDA's focal point in Ireland | HRB, Ireland

WHO launches reports on novel tobacco products to help bridge gap between science and policy

WHO is publishing 3 reports to inform countries on the current state of scientific knowledge, and regulatory and policy options available on novel tobacco products such as electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS), electronic non-nicotine delivery systems (ENNDS) and heated tobacco products (HTPs) | WHO, Switzerland

EMCDDA webinar: Prevention of drugs-related problems in time of COVID-19: what can we learn?

The EMCDDA is offering a new series of webinars around the theme of COVID-19. The purpose of the webinars is to help those working in the drugs field understand how drug users, and those supporting them, are coping with the pandemic and to share knowledge and experience | EMCDDA, Portugal

Primary Care–Based Interventions to Prevent Illicit Drug Use in Children, Adolescents, and Young Adults: US Preventive Services Task Force Recommendation Statement

Because of limited and inadequate evidence, the USPSTF concludes that the benefits and harms of primary care–based interventions to prevent illicit drug use in children, adolescents, and young adults are uncertain and that the evidence is insufficient to assess the balance of benefits and harms. More research is needed | JAMA Network, USA

Study shows high prevalence of vaping in U.S. schools

Vaping is most heavily concentrated in U.S. schools with a higher proportion of white students, schools in the South and West, and schools where more students smoke cigarettes, a new University of Michigan study shows | News Medical, USA

Sedative drug in combination with opioids may be especially dangerous

Results from a study of adults with kidney failure suggest that taking both short-acting benzodiazepines and opioids may put patients at an especially high risk of dying prematurely. The findings appear in an upcoming issue of CJASN | Medical Xpress, USA

The Mischaracterized Relationship Between Drug Use and Homelessness

Six months ago Jonny Brown admits he was in a dark place. Addicted to drugs, he’d lost his house and was sleeping rough | Filter Magazine, USA

“The Great” Offers a Window Into a Non-Temperance Way of Being

Netflix is currently screening The Great, a 10-part series portraying the improbable, nay astounding, story of Catherine II, Empress of Russia from 1762-1796 | Filter Magazine, USA

Changes Related to COVID-19 in the Illegal Drug Supply and Access to Services, and Resulting Health Harms (CCENDU Alert)

Summarizes preliminary information about the impact of COVID-19 on the illegal drug supply, the provision of harm reduction services and the associated health impacts for people who use drugs. Data were compiled from multiple sources across Canada between March 31 and May 10, 2020 | CCSA, Canada

Majority of cannabis use in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside for therapeutic purposes

Most people at high risk of overdose in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside who use cannabis do so for pain relief and other therapeutic reasons--and they may be at lower risk of overdosing on opioids as a result, suggests new research | EurekAlert, Canada

Cowboy alcohol delivery services choose profits over safety

VicHealth is calling out the dangerous practices of on-demand alcohol delivery giants like UberEats and BWS Online after new research reveals these services fail to meet the basic safety standards of alcohol service | VicHealth.gov.au, Australia



Blogs, comment and opinion

Virtual chemsex is on the rise in lockdown – but that doesn't mean it's any safer

The move to virtual sex sounds like a safer option as it reduces the risk of contracting sexually transmitted diseases, but virtual activity makes it harder to intervene or save people from overdosing | Independent voices, UK

Covid-19: GPs – crucial influencers in realising tobacco harm reduction

Covid-19 has surely been challenging for all, and though we have now hopefully crossed the peak, we will be seeing its implications for many months or even years to come. We are already seeing the negative impact of the lockdown and economic uncertainty on society’s mental health | NSP blog, UK