Weekly news - 25th August 2017


Weekly subscribe button

In date order, Monday to Friday

Accidental addiction to painkillers 'a public health crisis', says charity

As the number of dependent Britons is said to be soaring, experts criticise the lack of support for those struggling [Harry Shapiro from DrugWise quoted] | Sky News, UK

'Dangerous' drug found at V Festival in Staffordshire

Police said the drug tested at Weston Park, Staffordshire, contained "really serious chemicals that would have a severe adverse effect" | BBC, UK

Inside The Loop: The festival drug testing service trying to keep British revellers safe

Analysts found plaster of paris, monosodium glutamate, creatine, lactose, sugar and anti-malarial pills sold as drugs | Independent, UK

Spice: Police 'helpless' against psychoactive drug

Police across the UK feel "helpless" in the fight against the former legal high Spice, a senior officer has said | BBC, UK

Expert reaction to study of adolescents, e-cigarettes and smoking

In new research published in Tobacco Control scientists assess whether adolescent e-cigarette use was associated prospectively with initiation or escalation of cigarette use | Science Media Centre, UK

British prisons struggle to keep up with changes in drug use

Inspection findings were supplemented by fieldwork in eight prisons in 2014 to generate an overall picture of drug use and responses to it in prisons and England and Wales. In the face of rapidly changing and varied drug use patterns, responses were seen as insufficiently flexible and dynamic, though treatment had “dramatically” improved | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

The science of high-potency cannabis

What is in cannabis that can make it dangerously powerful? And what about claims of medical benefits? | BBC Newsbeat, UK

Lib Dems under Vince Cable still want to legalise cannabis

Vince Cable says the Liberal Democrats will keep pushing for the legalisation of cannabis | BBC Newsbeat, UK

Cannabis: Time For a Change? - BBC iplayer

As countries across the world look to decriminalise cannabis, Newsbeat reporter Jim Connolly asks whether it's time to change the law on the UK's most popular illegal drug | BBC Newsbeat, UK

Did the UK Government’s 2010 drug strategy tick all the boxes?

Coinciding with the release of the new drug strategy is an evaluation of
earlier efforts towards reducing demand, restricting supply, and
building recovery in communities. Condensed here from 220 pages to key
bullet points about activities undertaken, their effectiveness, and
value for money, it sets the scene for understanding how far the
evidence base informed the subsequent revision of the strategy | Drug
and Alcohol Findings, UK

Effectiveness Bank Drug Treatment Matrix course starts soon

In two weeks we will deliver the first instalment of the 2017/18 refresh of the Drug Treatment Matrix. Released fortnightly, the 25 cells and ‘bite’ commentaries will cumulate to a course reflecting on the most significant research underpinning practice, leading you through seminal and key studies on harm reduction and the treatment of problem drug use | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

Image and Performance Enhancing Drugs: public evidence gathering day

The ACMD is holding a public evidence gathering day on Image and Performance Enhancing Drugs on Tuesday 26 September at The Kia Oval, Vauxhall, London | ACMD, UK

New £23m addiction research centre opens in Hull

A new research centre has been opened in Hull to develop new treatments for drug addicts | BBC, UK

Baby boomers' drink and drug misuse needs urgent action, warn experts

Urgent action is needed to tackle drink and drug misuse among baby boomers, experts have warned, with a growing body of data from around the world suggesting that substance misuse is increasing among those in their mid-50s and older | Guardian, UK [see also BMJ editorial]

RIGHT TO KNOW: Are alcohol labels giving consumers the information they need? (PDF)

Our research shows it is time that we move away from industry self-regulation of alcohol product labelling. Instead, we need mandatory labelling of all products to ensure they convey the information the public are entitled to | Alcohol Health Alliance, UK

Health warnings on alcohol labels in UK are insufficient, says charity

Alcohol Health Alliance says only one of 315 labels it examined had up-to-date guidance and none had illness warning | Guardian, UK

Huge funding boost for new drugs research network in Scotland

Research into the impact of the use of drugs on people and society in Scotland is set to benefit from a ground-breaking collaboration between 11 universities and experts from at least six regional NHS Boards | SDF, UK

One night ecstasy - BBC iPlayer

July 2015. Excitement builds amongst a group of friends from a small town in Cumbria as they head to the defining festival of the summer. Out of sight of their parents they’re planning a weekend to remember | BBC, UK

Doing meth raises the risk of strokes in young people

People who use methamphetamine are almost five times more likely to have a stroke caused by a bleed in the brain, many of which are fatal. “We can add stroke to the list of terrible and devastating things that methamphetamine does,” says Damian Zuloaga, of the University at Albany, New York | New Scientist, UK

What drives home drinking? YouGov report for pubs to win back drinkers

A new YouGov report explores the current push and pull factors behind home drinking, offering the on-trade insights to attract drinkers back into pubs and bars. The report, 'Getting In-Home Drinkers To Go Out', is only available for a significant cost, but several trade publications have reported on key findings | Alcohol Policy UK, UK

Beers, bongs and baby boomers - BBC radio iPlayer

Substance misuse by people aged 50 and above is growing at alarming levels in the western world, according to a paper published today in the British Medical Journal. The increase - in what's known as the "baby boomer" generation - is expected to lead to a doubling of treatment in Europe and trebling of treatment in the United States in this age group. Dan Damon found out more from Dr Tony Rao, who helped carry out the research, and Karen Tyrell, from Addaction, a group that supports people of all ages dealing with substance abuse | BBC World Update, UK

Police Scotland 'single punch' campaign launched

One in eight incidences of violent crime in Scotland over a one-year-period involved a single punch, it has been revealed | BBC, UK

Mindfulness reduces alcohol consumption in heavy drinkers

Just 11 minutes of therapy can dramatically decrease alcohol intake, according to a new study from UCL | WIRED, UK

Notification of tobacco or herbal products for smoking

Guidance for businesses needing to notify the government that they are placing a tobacco or herbal product for smoking on the market | PHE, UK

A millenial mnifesto: Twelve ideas to help government win over young voters (PDF)

including The policy of prohibition, penalties and punishment has clearly not succeeded in eradicating their use. What it has done is to put many young people into conflict with the law. They regard the police as enemies who try to apprehend and punish them for what they regard as innocent pleasures | Adam Smith Institute, UK

Tories should legalise drugs to win millennial votes, says right wing think tank

A right-wing think tank has suggested that the Conservative Party should legalise recreational drugs, including cocaine and ecstasy, in order to win more votes from millennials | Business Insider, UK

Always practise safe sesh #2. Cocaine - video

In the UK it can seem that the harm reduction resources on offer mainly utilise scaremongering tactics, using pictures of a people bleeding through their eyes as the word PARANOIA flashes across the screen. This is the remedy | VICE, UK