Weekly news - 24th May 2019


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In date order - Monday to Friday

Scrapping of drugs room plan for Bristol criticised

The scrapping of a trial of "safe rooms" where addicts could take drugs under medical supervision has been criticised by a campaigner | BBC, UK

Don't be complacent over laughing gas risks, say nurses

The gas - nitrous oxide - is the second most commonly used recreational drug in England and Wales after cannabis | BBC, UK

Police arrest 586 people in county lines crackdown

Nearly 600 suspected members of county lines drugs gangs have been arrested across the UK in the past week, the National Crime Agency has said | BBC, UK

Scotland drug death rate highest in Europe and still on rise

The rate of drug deaths in Scotland is the highest in Europe and numbers are still on the rise, a report has said. Drug-related deaths in Scotland have almost doubled in eight years, with 934 recorded in 2017 - up from 545 in 2009 | BBC, UK

Report: Drug and alcohol services: an update

This paper provides an overview of the current position of drug and alcohol services in Scotland and summarises the progress against recommendations made in our 2009 report | Audit Scotland, UK

House of Commons backs call for easier access to medical cannabis

The House of Commons has backed a motion calling on the government to ensure medical cannabis is made available to “appropriate patients” | Pharmaceutical Journal, UK

Virtual clinical trial: Improving methadone dosage for drug users with TB to prevent withdrawal symptoms

Drug users on methadone programs who contract tuberculosis (TB) should receive effective treatment while maintaining the correct level of methadone in their bodies, following a virtual clinical trial by pharmacy researchers at Aston University in partnership with drugs charity Addaction | News Medical, UK

First task: save lives, reduce harm

Throughout the month of May we are releasing weekly bulletins on the topic of harm reduction. This week we draw from the first five cells of the drug treatment matrix (our online course), introducing research on reducing harm to the user as a result of their drug use. How does the core dilemma of whether to ‘meet people where they are at’ versus focus on prompting health-promoting and addiction-ending change affect service delivery and impact? | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

End of life care for people with problematic substance use

This website offers resources developed from a two year research programme on end of life care for people with alcohol and other drug problems | MMU et al, UK

E-cigs can double success rates of quitting smoking, UK study finds

The research, funded by the charity Cancer Research UK and published in the journal Addiction on Thursday, analysed success rates of several common stop-smoking methods - including e-cigarettes, nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) patches and gum, and Pfizer’s varenicline, sold as Champix in the UK | Reuters, UK

Health matters: Prevention - a life course approach

This resource for NHS and public health professionals focuses on taking a life course approach to the prevention of ill health and explores the evidence base for this approach. The resource signposts to evidence-based interventions and tools, as well as to evaluation and monitoring techniques. [Considers the role of smoking, alcohol and other drug use] | PHE, UK

Family safeguarding in Hertfordshire

Growing up with a parent who is dependent on alcohol can have an extremely harmful impact on the life course of a child and has the potential to have a multi-generational influence. Children in these circumstances are more likely to miss school and to have poor educational outcomes | PHE, UK

Without safe injection sites, more opioid users will die

Ontario is undoubtedly in the midst of an opioid overdose crisis. From January to September 2018, an incredible 1,031 Ontarians died of an overdose | Conversation, Canada