Weekly news - 2nd November 2018

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In date order - Monday to Friday

Drugs: Rehabilitation

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the funding allocated for substance misuse services in England by (a) local authority and (b) in total in each year since 2012 | They work for you, UK


To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government on the financial effect of the increase in the cost of prescribing buprenorphine on the provision of substance misuse services | They work for you, UK


To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether he plans to increase the number of (a) needle and syringe programmes for people with addictions and (b) people whom those programmes cover | They work for you, UK

Electronic Cigarettes

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what comparative assessment his Department has made of the advice on the efficacy of e-cigarettes as a stop smoking aid between Public Health England’s document entitled Stop smoking options: guidance for conversations with patients and NICE’s document entitled Stop smoking interventions and services guidance | They work for you, UK

Public support for cannabis legalisation at record high

[Shared article] The public now overwhelmingly backs the full legalisation of cannabis, according to a poll that suggests there has been a seismic shift in opinion since the government sanctioned medical use of the drug | The Times, UK

Alfie Dingley 'amazingly well' after cannabis treatment

A seven-year-old boy who was at the heart of a public outcry over medicinal cannabis legalisation is doing "amazingly well", his mother has said | BBC, UK

Budget 2018: still no favour for health calls

The 2018 budget has disappointed health groups by freezing beer and spirit duties, though wine duty is set to rise in line with inflation. Most cider duties are frozen though a new duty band for cider at 6.9% to 7.5% will come into effect in February 2019 seeking to target infamous 'white ciders' | Alcohol Policy UK, UK

Westminster Hall - Drugs Policy - video

Recorded coverage of the debate in Westminster Hall on UK drugs policy, from Tuesday 23 October | BBC, UK

Rehabilitation Centres: Location

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what guidance his Department has issued to (a) NHS Trusts and (b) Care Commissioning Groups on consulting local communities on the location of drug and alcohol recovery and treatment centres | They work for you, UK

Global Drug Survey 2019

This year, GDS2019 is translated into 20 languages and with partners in over 35 countries we hope this will be our biggest yet. Committed to helping people use drugs more safely regardless of the legal status of the drug and promoting honest conversation about drug use, GDS relies on the experience and expertise from people all over the world. Share your story with us and help us create change that help people have happier lives and policy that supports health well being, not punishment and stigmatization | GDS, UK

North-south divide in early deaths deepening, study finds

There has been a “profoundly concerning” rise in early deaths from accidents, suicide, alcohol misuse, smoking, cancer and drug addiction in the north of England, deepening the north-south divide, research has found | Guardian, UK

Lethal drugs can be bought online in just five minutes, health watchdog warns

It  takes just five minutes for anyone with a credit card to buy lethal drugs online, health watchdogs have warned, as they call for the public to take more care before buying prescription drugs from websites | Telegraph, UK

Incarceration is likely to increase HIV and HCV transmission among people who inject drugs, new study finds

Injecting drug use, through the sharing of needles, syringes and other injecting equipment, is a primary route of transmission for both HIV and hepatitis C virus (HCV), blood-borne infections that cause considerable morbidity and mortality worldwide | Bristol Health Partners, UK

Amnesty bins yield thousands of drugs in north west

More than 6,000 prescription and illegal drugs have been dumped in the first six weeks of an amnesty scheme in the north west | BBC, UK

Cannabis-based products for medicinal use: Guidance to clinicians

Following the Government’s announcement to reschedule certain cannabis-based products for medicinal use,  NHS England has provided guidance to clinicians following the re-scheduling which sets out our expectations of what this regulatory change will mean in practice for clinicians working in the NHS and in private practice in England | NHS England, UK

Medical cannabis products available on prescription

Medicinal cannabis products can now be legally prescribed to some patients across the UK for the first time | BBC, UK

NHS smoking cessation services

Quarterly data on Welsh resident smokers making a quit attempt via smoking cessation services | Welsh Government, UK

Taking our health for granted: Plugging the public health grant funding gap

This briefing paper assesses the extent of cuts to the public health grant since 2014/15 and projects the amount required per year to plug the funding gap that now exists | The Health Foundation, UK

Last orders? Morning drinking at airports faces ban

Home Office to review licensing laws following rise in arrests for drunken behaviour | Guardian, UK

Fears over pre-teens being exposed to inappropriate adverts online, as regulators step up controls

Pre-teens are being targeted with adverts for inappropriate alcohol and gambling, the chief executive of the advertising regulator has warned, as he called on social media firms to do more to protect children | Telegraph, UK

Serious and organised crime 'costs UK economy £37bn a year'

Serious and organised crime costs the UK economy £37 billion a year, according to an official assessment | Telegraph, UK

National Statistics: Substance misuse treatment for adults: statistics 2017 to 2018

Statistics on alcohol and drug misuse treatment for adults from PHE’s national drug treatment monitoring system (NDTMS) | PHE, UK

Research and analysis: Alcohol dependence prevalence in England

Estimates of the number of alcohol dependent adults in each local authority in England | PHE, UK

Research and analysis - Alcohol treatment inquiry: summary of findings

Report on the findings and recommendations of Public Health England’s inquiry into the fall in numbers of people in treatment for alcohol dependence | PHE, UK

'Desperate crisis' as addiction services reach fewer people

Labour blames budget cuts as numbers treated for substance misuse falls by 4% in England | Guardian, UK

Number of people treated for crack cocaine problems rises 44% in two years

Public Health England says treatment rise likely to be related to drug being more prevalent | Guardian, UK

Open consultation: Airside alcohol licensing at international airports in England and Wales: call for evidence

We are seeking evidence on alcohol-related disruptive behaviour at our airports and the impact airside alcohol licensing could have on reducing this problem | Home Office, UK

Circular 018/2018: rescheduling of cannabis-based products for medicinal use in humans

This circular draws attention to the contents of the Statutory Instrument (SI) – SI 2018/1055 | Home Office, UK

Medical cannabis (and cannabis oils)

"Medical cannabis" is a broad term for any sort of cannabis-based medicine used to relieve symptoms. This article presents an FAQ on medicinal cannabis | NHS, UK

'Very few people' likely to get prescription for medical cannabis as it becomes legal in the UK

NHS guidance for patients explains that medical cannabis will only be prescribed for a limited number of conditions and only if all other treatment options have already been explored | Pharmaceutical Journal, UK

The global burden of disease attributable to alcohol and drug use in 195 countries and territories, 1990–2016: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2016

We aimed to use data from the Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study (GBD) 2016 to calculate global and regional estimates of the prevalence of alcohol, amphetamine, cannabis, cocaine, and opioid dependence, and to estimate global disease burden attributable to alcohol and drug use between 1990 and 2016, and for 195 countries and territories within 21 regions, and within seven super-regions. We also aimed to examine the association between disease burden and Socio-demographic Index (SDI) quintiles | Lancet, UK