Weekly news - 24th February 2017


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In date order, Monday to Friday

Responsible drinking messages & labels: do drinkers pay attention?

Two recent studies have explored the extent to which 'warning' or 'responsible drinking' messages on drinks labels or in bars or pubs are noticed. Both studies firstly question the level of attention given to such messages in the first case, but also whether attention to such messages may have any effect on drinking behaviour | Alcohol Policy UK, UK

Qualitative exploration of why people repeatedly attend emergency departments for alcohol-related reasons

Understanding why people repeatedly attend Emergency Departments (EDs) for alcohol-related reasons is an important prerequisite to identifying ways of reducing any unnecessary demands on hospital resources | Biomed Central, UK

Stockton drugs deaths: Three dead after taking 'low grade heroin'

The deaths of three people in the space of a week are being blamed on a batch of low grade heroin which is circulating on Teesside | BBC, UK

Smokers trying to quit hit by postcode lottery as GPs ration help

Health experts warn of rising death rates and a false economy as cutbacks hit treatment | Guardian, UK

Introducing the MEAM Approach - video

The MEAM Approach helps local areas across England design and deliver a more coordinated approach to multiple needs including homelessness, substance misuse, contact with the criminal justice system and mental ill health. In this video, we hear from practitioners and people with lived experience of multiple needs about using the MEAM Approach with our support | MEAM, UK

The 'secrecy and shame' of having alcoholic parents - video

Labour MP Caroline Flint has spoken of the "secrecy and shame" of having an alcoholic parent | BBC, UK

Local authorities need to work together with nightclubs and gyms to prevent drug misuse

Gyms, nightclubs and festivals should display posters and mount social media campaigns to highlight the risks of drug misuse, a new guideline from NICE says | NICE, UK

Design of optimal corrective taxes in the alcohol market (PDF)

Alcohol consumption is associated with costs to society due to its impact on crime and health. Tax can lead consumers to internalise these externalities. We study optimal corrective taxation in the alcohol market. We allow for the fact that the externality generating commodity (ethanol) is available in many differentiated products, over which consumers might have heterogeneous preferences, and that there may also be heterogeneity in marginal externalities across consumers | IFS, UK

Can therapists really make things worse?

One of the questions you are invited to consider in the latest ‘bite-size’ introduction to the Alcohol Treatment Matrix. Topic is the effectiveness and general principles of psychosocial therapies for alcohol dependence | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

Experts call for action on High strength cider to protect homeless and vulnerable (PDF)

The Alcohol Health Alliance and Thames Reach, the homelessness organisation, are today calling for duty increases on high-strength cider, which is a leading cause of death and ill-health among the homeless | AHA, Thamesreach, UK

Cancer cases in Wales rise by 10% in 10 years

The organisation's Dr Dyfed Wyn Huws said there was "good news" by way of significant reductions in smoking rates in recent decades | BBC, UK

Clever teenagers twice as likely to smoke cannabis due to their curious minds, study finds

Clever children are twice as likely to smoke cannabis as teenagers due to their curious minds, a landmark study has found | telegraph, UK

Say why to drugs podcast - Benzodiazepines

The internet is full of misinformation about recreational drugs - both legal and illegal. Dr Suzi Gage, a psychologist interested in understanding associations between substance use and mental health, tackles one substance per episode - providing information about what we know - the harms, but also potential benefits of these substances | Suzi Cage, UK

Prison governor empowerment and accountability

Progress made in getting offenders off drugs. Prisoners will be tested on entry and exit with a phased roll out beginning in 2017 | Ministry of Justice, The Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss MP and National Offender Management Service, UK

Warn gym users about steroid risks, says watchdog

Gym owners should warn their customers not to use dangerous steroids in a bid to stem the rise of body-enhancing drug abuse fuelled by “selfie” culture, health experts have said | Telegraph, UK

Peers call on government to publish Tobacco Control Plan

A cross party and crossbench group of peers today called on the Government to publish the promised new tobacco control strategy without further delay.  The call followed an oral question by Lord Rennard of Wavertree (Liberal Democrat) who asked what further action the Government planned to take to reduce the incidence of smoking-related diseases | ASH, UK

Police Issue Warning About Potentially Strong Strain of Heroin in Circulation in Leeds

West Yorkshire Police are issuing a warning to drug users about the dangers of substances they take following a potentially fatal batch of heroin in circulation in Leeds | West Yorkshire Police, UK

Addaction's 50th Birthday Radio 4 Appeal

[Happy Birthday to Addaction - 50 years old today]. One mother's determination to create better support for individuals & families affected by addiction created Addaction | Addaction, UK