Weekly news - 11th January 2019

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In date order - Monday to Friday

NHS Long Term Plan will help problem drinkers and smokers

Problem drinkers and smokers who end up in hospital will be helped by dedicated new services as part of the NHS Long Term Plan | NHS, UK

Hospital patients who smoke or drink to be helped to quit

Smokers and problem drinkers who are admitted to hospital in England will be given help to quit or cut down, to reduce demands on the health service | BBC, UK

MPs criticise NHS over failure to prescribe medical cannabis

Family of first child prescribed medical cannabis forced to follow bureaucratic ‘assault course’ | Guardian, UK

Misperceptions about vaping common among UK smokers

Research from King’s College London finds smokers and ex-smokers in the UK overestimate the harm from vaping, with fewer than 6 out of 10 accurately believing that e-cigarettes are less harmful than tobacco cigarettes | KCL, UK

Smoking shisha linked to diabetes and obesity, study finds

Smoking shisha "significantly increases" the risk of users developing diabetes and obesity, a major study has revealed for the first time | Telegraph, UK

Illegal tobacco 'commodity of choice for organised crime'

Organised criminals selling illicit cigarettes target Wales due to a lack of investment in enforcement, a senior investigator has said | BBC, UK

UK prisons should bring in airport-style security searches, says minister

Call comes as police chief says gangs are infiltrating prison service to smuggle in drugs | Guardian, UK

Juul: The rise of a $38bn e-cigarette phenomenon

Juul has all the qualities of a standard Silicon Valley success - fat profit margins, explosive growth, and even the cultural cachet to make its name a verb | BBC, UK

Illicit and prescription drugs 'played role in ten deaths'

There have been 10 suspected drugs-related deaths in the greater Belfast area since December, police have said | BBC, UK

Alcohol consumption can damage oral health, warn dental surgeons

As people across the UK pledge to do “Dry January” following alcohol-fuelled Christmas and New Year celebrations, a leading dental surgeon is urging individuals to limit their alcohol consumption for another important reason – their oral health | Royal College of Surgeons, UK

Drugs policy: medicinal cannabis inquiry

As the first part of a wider inquiry into the impact of drugs policy on public health, the Committee is seeking evidence on the usage of medicinal cannabis products - the deadline is Friday 8 February 2019 | parliament.uk, UK

Scottish drug crisis sparks national emergency alert as deaths top 1000 for 2018

Shameful figures show areas seeing DOUBLE the amount of drug deaths between January and July compared to last year | Daily Record, UK

Discovered: different brain areas linked to smoking and drinking

In new research the areas of the brain that are different in those who smoke and those who drink have been identified: the tendency to drink alcohol is associated with increased connectivity of brain networks associated with reward processing; and the tendency to smoke is associated with low connectivity of systems that respond to not receiving rewards | University of Warwick, UK

National project to build connections in recovery

Addaction will deliver a national peer support project to combat loneliness in recovery, thanks to an award of nearly £100,000 from the Big Lottery Fund’s Building Connections | Addaction, UK

Drug and Alcohol Services available to migrants without charge

Migrants will not be charged for drug and alcohol services equivalent to ‘primary medical services’ following amendments to the Department for Health and Social Care’s Guidance on implementing the overseas visitors charging regulations | Blenheim, UK

Constant cravings: is addiction on the rise?

From sex to sugar to social media, people are in the grip of a wider range of compulsive behaviours.But what is driving them – and what can be done? | Guardian, UK

Smokers who use e-cigarettes no more likely to quit in the long term, study finds

People who use e-cigarettes alongside traditional cigarettes are no more likely to quit smoking in the long term than those who only smoke cigarettes, research published in Nicotine & Tobacco Research (20 October 2018) has shown | Pharmaceutical Journal, UK

Mental health patients missing GP appointments 'at risk'

The University of Glasgow study looked at 274,547 patients with long-term mental health conditions, at surgeries across Scotland between 2013 and 2016. Of those who missed appointments, 32.1% were addicted to alcohol and drugs | BBC, UK