Weekly news - 21st September 2018


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In date order, Monday to Friday

People who inject drugs: non-fatal overdose monitoring

Report on non-fatal overdose monitoring data collected from the unlinked anonymous monitoring survey of HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C in people who inject drugs | PHE, UK

Middle-class 'consume more drugs and alcohol' than poorest

UK report finds 14.2 million living in poverty more likely to smoke and have disabilities | Guardian, UK

Jon Ashworth: Alcohol addiction services will no longer be neglected

The Labour Party has promised to strengthen links between addiction services and mental health services if it comes to power, matching one of the recommendations in the Alcohol and mental health report published by the Institute of Alcohol Studies and Centre for Mental Health | IAS, UK

Diane Abbott in cannabis oil U-turn as she backs legalisation for medicinal use

A Labour government would legalise the prescription of cannabis oil for medical purposes and mount a review into public health related drugs policy, Diane Abbott has confirmed | Politics Home, UK

Police leader urges for new approach on cannabis

Cannabis clubs, where the drug is shared and smoked among members, are growing in popularity in the UK. The BBC's Victoria Derbyshire programme took the police and crime commissioner for drug policy to meet people from three clubs to find out what they could contribute to the legalisation debate | BBC, UK

Alcohol-free months are all the rage – but will a sober October lead to long-term health benefits?

Dry January is already popular, and people are being encouraged to take a break from alcohol next month, too. Does this make a big difference, or should we be finding new ways to drink less? | Guardian, UK

A DMT trip 'feels like dying' - and scientists now agree

A new scientific study suggests strong similarities between near death experiences and the psychedelic drug | BBC, UK

Criminal exploitation of children and vulnerable adults: county lines

Guidance for frontline professionals on dealing with county lines, part of the government’s approach to ending gang violence and exploitation | Home Office, UK

What to do When You Suspect Substance Use in the Classroom (PDF)

The drug landscape for young people is ever-changing and there is no doubt that it is very different than when we were at school. Sometimes teachers see a different side of children and young people than their parents see | Mentor, UK

The Doctor Treating Heroin Addiction With Heroin

Dr. Christian Plattner wants to encourage more medical specialists to use diamorphine to treat severe addictions | VICE, UK

Tell middle-aged drinkers they're embarrassing, study says

Warning middle aged people they risk embarrassing themselves through drinking is more effective at improving behaviour than highlighting the health implications, a new study has found | Telegraph, UK

Seven people die of drug overdoses at Vietnam music festival

Five more festival goers are in comas | Independent, UK

Defqon.1 deaths: sniffer dogs don't deter revellers from drug use, researchers find

Exclusive: Survey finds those at music festivals more likely to conceal or consume drugs when faced by police dogs | Guardian, UK

One in 11 US teens have vaped cannabis, new study finds

One in 11 US teenagers has used a vapouriser to consume cannabis, according to a new study which calls it an emerging and dangerous trend | BBC, UK

Drugs Misuse Intervention Support Fund

Open opportunity - This means that the contract is currently unfulfilled but active, and the buying department is looking for potential suppliers to contact them with bid applications | Gov.uk Contracts Finder, UK

Spice Users are Becoming a Cruel Online Joke

A growing number of sites have become dedicated to posting 'funny' videos of the victims of Britain's Spice epidemic | VICE, UK

Friend of student who died after taking MDMA could go to jail for supplying drugs

'All sentencing options remain open’ for Katherine Lavin, friend of deceased Joana Burns | Guardian, UK

‘My son is proof medicinal cannabis works’: Alfie Dingley is now seizure-free and learning to ride a bike

Hannah Deacon, his mother, is now helping 16 families with their own fight for access | i news, UK

Drug amnesty bins installed in north west

Drug bins that allow users to dump illegal and prescription drugs have been installed at eight locations in the north west | BBC, UK

Sheffield council targets shisha users in health campaign

A council has launched a health campaign aimed at shisha users, likening smoking it for an hour to smoking 100 cigarettes | BBC, UK

'Don't go cold turkey' to quit smoking

Smokers looking to quit as part of the annual Stoptober campaign are being warned not to go "cold turkey" | BBC, UK

Public health experts split over deal with industry funded charity

Public Health England’s decision to partner with Drinkaware has raised questions about how it should engage with the public. Tom Moberly talks to delegates at PHE’s annual conference | BMJ, UK

Primary Care brief interventions 'cost effective': a future a priority?

new study has reported the levels of alcohol brief intervention in Primary Care are 'extremely low' in England and investment through training and incentives would be cost-effective | Alcohol Policy UK, UK

Partygoers on flights warned 'excessive drinking' will lead to hefty fines

Airline industry says revellers flying to end-of-season parties in the Med risk fines of £5,000 or being kicked off flights for antisocial behaviour | Guardian, UK

Are drink-driving limits too high?

Have you ever decided to drive your car after a few drinks and wondered whether you were close to the limit - if it was safe? | BBC, UK

‘Legal highs’ may be more dangerous than traditional drugs of abuse

Novel psychoactive substances (NPS), or “legal highs”, have had various definitions but can simply be thought of as new drugs of abuse. Some may be entirely new, some may be designed to mimic existing drugs, some are based on psychoactive plants and some are medicines | Conversation, UK

Coca Crops in Colombia at all-time high, UNODC Report finds

The area under coca cultivation in Colombia reached the highest ever recorded figure of 171,000 hectares (ha) in 2017, according to UNODC's Coca Cultivation Survey Report for Colombia, launched in Bogota today. This represents an increase of 25,000 hectares, or 17 per cent in 2017 compared to 2016 | UNODC, Austria

Huge rise in ambulance callouts to deal with spice users

Figures prompt concerns from paramedics and police that some areas may be engulfed by synthetic cannabinoids | Guardian, UK

One person quits smoking every 80 seconds in England

PHE encourages people to join in the mass quit attempt, Stoptober, and get the right stop smoking support for them | PHE, UK

Smoking will be 'eradicated in England by 2030'

Smoking will be “eradicated” in England by 2030 as roughly a thousand people quit every day, health chiefs have predicted | Telegraph, UK

Public Health England backs review of alcohol charity's guidance

Industry-funded Drinkaware’s website needs full audit, says agency criticised for tie-up | Guardian, UK

What do we know about reducing alcohol-related harm among gay and bisexual men?

This review focuses on a cohort disproportionately burdened by ill health, yet often overlooked as subjects of substance use research and in the provision of healthcare. With an ‘alarmingly scarce’ evidence base to go on, the researchers draw parallels with the broader alcohol treatment literature, and suggest progress could be made with attention to specific theories of problem drinking for sexual minority groups | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

Tobacco display ban linked to fewer children buying cigarettes

Removing displays of tobacco products from shops may have reduced the proportion of children buying cigarettes by 17%, according to new research | ITV, UK

Labour calls for ban on gambling ads during live events

Labour is calling for a ban on gambling advertising during live sporting events in a bid to tackle problem gambling | BBC, UK