Weekly news - 22nd September 2017

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Public Health England has launched an expression of interest process for local authorities to take part in a high profile randomised control trial to test the effectiveness of the Individual Placement and Support (IPS) employment support approach for individuals with drug and alcohol dependency problems accessing community treatment services. The expression of interest closing date is Tuesday 31st October.

Two expression of interest events are being held for areas that wish to learn more about participation in the trial, and to share ideas and ask any questions of the project team: London: 26th September (10.00–13.00) /  Leeds: 28th September (13.00–16.00)

For any further queries, or if local authorities commissioners wish to receive the expression of interest materials, or to book a place at the events, please get in touch with PHE at IPSdependencytrials@phe.gov.uk


In date order, Monday to Friday

Charter for change (PDF)

The Drugs, Alcohol & Justice Cross-Party Parliamentary Group provides an interface for professional providers of drug and alcohol treatment with parliamentarians of all parties who share an interest in these issues. We seek to focus attention on addiction issues and advocate evidence-based policies, enabling treatment services to save and transform more lives | Drugs, Alcohol & Justice Cross-Party Parliamentary Group, UK

Centre for Public Appointments

The Recovery Champion will be expected to commit to working a minimum of 25-30 days per year for an initial term of three years | Cabinet Office, UK

Drug Deaths

That this House is alarmed at the 3,744 drug-related deaths registered in England and Wales and the 867 registered in Scotland in 2016; notes with dismay that these rates are far higher than those across Europe; further notes that the majority of these deaths involved an opiate, mostly heroin or morphine... | Parliament.uk, UK

Multiple Needs: Time for political leadership

The government has stated its determination to tackle an escalating set of crises: homelessness, substance misuse, mental ill health and persistently high re-offending rates. Despite some progress, there is currently a fundamental flaw in the way we deal with these problems: we treat them as separate when they are connected. If this doesn’t change, things will only get worse – with appalling human and financial consequences | MEAM, UK

North Wales drug fix room pilot moves forward

A drug fix room could become a reality in north Wales, according to the region's police and crime commissioner | BBC, UK

Drugs map of Britian: Fentanyl deadlier than heroin - BBC iPlayer

Fentanyl is on the rise in the UK. In this episode of Drugs Map of Britain, BBC Three explores the effect this drug has in Hull | BBC, UK

Fentanyl influx 'an alarming prospect' for drugs groups

Drug agencies in Wales have admitted they are not ready for a potential influx of the painkiller fentanyl, which has led to a number of deaths | BBC, UK

Police accused of turning blind eye to ecstasy-related crime after drop in convictions

Police have been accused of turning a blind eye to ecstasy-related crime after figures from the country's biggest police force revealed the number of convictions is dropping | Telegraph, UK

Where are young people getting drug information from?

The drug education children are receiving in school is severely lacking. So, in the absence of high quality education about drugs, where are young people getting their information from? | Volte Face, UK

The Secret Lives of Functioning Heroin Users

"I use on a lunchtime at work, only a couple of lines or so, which I smoke in the disabled toilet." | VICE, UK

CQC to rate more providers following inspection

The Department of Health has confirmed that it will grant CQC the power to be able to rate independent healthcare providers, including cosmetic surgery, substance misuse and termination of pregnancy clinics for the first time so that people have clear and accessible information about even more of their care services | CQC, UK

Fentanyl: The drug 50 times stronger than heroin

“On a scale of one to 10, heroin is a two, and fentanyl is like an 11. It’s like going from being slapped by a pillow to hit by a train.” | BBC, UK

Welsh Government launch new plan to stub out smoking

A new plan to reduce the number of smokers in Wales to 16% by 2020 for a healthier, smoke-free Wales has been launched by the Welsh Government today | Welsh Government, UK

Guidance: Stop smoking services: models of delivery

This document is intended to support directors of public health and local healthcare commissioners with the provision of local stop smoking support | PHE, UK

Tobacco: Health Education

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, how much his Department spent on tobacco prevention education in the UK in 2016 | They work for you, UK

Addiction services; Schizophrenia; Hearts and cancer BBC radio iPlayer

Inside Health reveals the poor state of addiction services in England with heroin and morphine related deaths the highest on record. Professor Colin Drummond raises concerns about a split in care between the NHS and Local Authorities since the 2012 Health and Social Care Act. And personal testimony is heard from Alison Bedford Russell whose son George died of a heroin overdose last year | BBC Radio 4, UK

Drug Treatment Matrix cell B1: The practitioner in harm reduction

Second cell of the Drug Treatment Matrix explores key studies on the impact of the practitioner on reducing harms associated with illegal drug use, in which trust emerges as a fundamental ingredient. Reconceptualise needle exchanges as safe havens in a largely rejecting world and explore why a Philadelphia methadone counsellor stood out - for all the wrong reasons | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

Drinkers' Voice Vs 'anti-alcohol'? Guidelines, pregnancy & cancer risk messages

A new group that aims to 'give the public a voice in the debate on moderate drinking' has launched as new research on the revised guidelines, drinking in pregnancy and cancer warnings hit the headlines | Alcohol Policy UK, UK

New national alcohol guidelines in the UK: public awareness, understanding and behavioural intentions

Alcohol consumption places a significant burden on the NHS and is an important risk factor for cancer, associated with 12 800 UK cases/year. New alcohol guidelines were published in 2016, taking into account the increasing evidence of the health harms of alcohol | JPH, UK

Charity warns that 'legal high' ban has led to switch to other illegal drugs

The report found that the percentage decline in ‘legal high’ use had been replaced with an increase in the percentage of clients reporting use of cannabis, cocaine and MDMA. It also highlights an increase in cocaine use across many Scottish drug and health services | Pharmaceutical Journal, UK

Prince William asks if drugs should be legalised

The Duke of Cambridge’s unexpected intervention in the drugs debate came during a visit to the east London-based Spitalfields Crypt Trust (SCT), which provides services for alcohol and drug addicts and supports them in trying to get clean | Independent, UK

Criminals deliberately get arrested so they can sell drugs to prison inmates, warns police expert

Police officers urged to ‘be on the lookout for offenders who are desperate to get locked up’ | Independent, UK

‘Legal highs’ linked to violence - video

Spice, black mamba, chronic were outlawed last year under the government’s latest drugs legislation, their dangers revealed by images of zombie-like users collapsed in the street.  Channel 4 News has now been given exclusive access to an acute mental health ward, where staff say the effects of legal highs are worse than crack cocaine | Channel 4, UK

Alcohol Awareness Week

Alcohol and Families – 13-19 November 2017. For this year’s Alcohol Awareness Week, Alcohol Concern will be partnering with Adfam to look at the effects of harmful alcohol use on the family | Alcohol Concern and Adfam, UK

Facebook trial lets users hide alcohol adverts

It is the first time a social network has let people proactively block adverts on a specific topic. The move has been welcomed by Alcohol Research UK, which says social media is "saturated" with alcohol promotions | BBC, UK

NHS Health Scotland: E-cigs 'definitely' less harmful than smoking

E-cigarettes are "definitely" less harmful than smoking tobacco, health bodies in Scotland have stated for the first time | BBC, UK

Success rates for people quitting smoking hit record high

Nearly 20% of those who quit in first half of 2017 have been successful, with e-cigarettes becoming most popular method of quitting, say UCL researchers | Guardian, UK

Quit smoking campaign Stoptober backs e-cigs for first time

The annual Stoptober campaign in England is embracing e-cigarettes for the first time - in a sign vaping is being seen as the key to getting people to quit | BBC, UK

Fentanyl mixed with heroin in drugs seized by police

A deadly new drug has been found for sale in Northern Ireland | BBC, UK

Pregabalin, known as 'new valium', to be made class C drug after deaths

Prescription drug is handed out too readily and used recreationally, say doctors, with 111 deaths linked to it last year | Guardian, UK

Smoking cessation interventions and services: Draft guidance consultation

You can now review and comment on this draft guideline. The consultation closes on Wednesday 1 November 2017 at 5pm | NICE, UK

Universities are turning a blind eye to freshers’ week 'excesses', vice-Chancellor warns

Universities are turning a blind eye to freshers’ week “excesses”, a vice-Chancellor has warned as he urges institutions to end their “permissive” culture | Telegraph, UK

Alcohol champions to reduce drinking in Greater Manchester

A pioneering programme ‘Communities in Charge of Alcohol’ has been launched today (Thursday, 21 September) to combat the growing number of people who are drinking excessive amounts of alcohol across the city region | GMCA, UK