Weekly news - 9th April 2020

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Coronavirus frequently updated resources

NEW: COVID-19 resources page for people who use drugs (PWUD) and drug service providers - International | EMCDDA

Treatment and recovery services – and COVID-19 |Collective Voice

COVID-19 and smoking: resources, research and news | BMJ

Coronavirus: information and advice hub - alcohol | Alcohol Change UK

In date order, Monday to Friday:

Smokers at greater risk of severe respiratory disease from COVID-19

Emerging evidence from China shows smokers with COVID-19 are 14 times more likely to develop severe respiratory disease | PHE, UK

The public health grant has been increased but is still too low

The 2020/21 public health grant allocations are a welcome increase, but are not enough to reverse previous cuts entirely | The Health Foundation, UK

Britain’s drinking habits are changing under lockdown

With Britain’s pubs, bars and restaurants shut down, the nation’s drinking patterns have changed as a result, with almost a quarter of the population (24%) buying alcohol online in the past two weeks, and with more planning to in the coming weeks, new research shows | CGA, UK

People who inject drugs can ‘give bacteria the boot’ with new SDF booklet

SDF have published a new resource to highlight good hygiene practices for people who inject drugs in order to prevent the spread of bacteria and viruses | SDF, UK

Coronavirus: Dealing with addiction while in lockdown

The coronavirus lockdown has been especially tough for people in recovery from addiction because support meetings have been cancelled | BBC, UK

COVID-19 resources page for people who use drugs (PWUD) and drug service providers

On this page, the EMCDDA has compiled examples of advice being issued to people who use drugs and service providers by some national bodies and different associations, networks and NGOs. This page is being continuously updated | EMCDDA, Portugal

International standards for the treatment of drug use disorders (PDF)

This document is the work of UNODC and WHO to support Member States in their efforts to develop and expand effective, evidence-based and ethical treatment for drug use disorders. The Standards are intended for all those involved in the policy development, planning, funding, delivery, monitoring and evaluation of treatment services and interventions for drug use disorders. This document is based on currently available scientific evidence on treatment for drug use disorders and sets out a framework for the implementation of the Standards, in line with principles of public health care | UNODC and WHO, Austria and Switzerland

Nonfatal Drug Overdoses Treated in Emergency Departments — United States, 2016–2017

From 2016 to 2017, the nonfatal overdose ED visits rates for all drugs, all opioids, nonheroin opioids, heroin, and cocaine increased significantly, whereas those for benzodiazepines decreased significantly | CDC, USA

DDN April 2020

You will no doubt have enough to worry about at home and work but we hope that this edition will bring a sense of proportion to the task ahead. With so much beyond our control, we need to focus on essential priorities – which is where the clear protocols and sound harm-reduction practices are so useful. We have been so impressed by the swift initiatives to share action that will save lives | DDN, UK

Supporting people affected by alcohol and drug use

Extra support for people affected by alcohol and drug use during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has been announced by the Minister for Public Health Joe FitzPatrick. Funding of £166,000 will support: 1) a programme to increase access to naloxone in new settings, including investment in kits to add to the existing outlets for naloxone supply. 2) Increased capacity within the Know the Score helpline and webchat service. 3) a COVID-19 publicity campaign signposting support for alcohol and drug use during the pandemic and 4) funding to link people with others in recovery through the Scottish Recovery Consortium | Scottish Government, UK

Guidance on contingency planning for people who use drugs and COVID-19

Guidance has been produced on contingency planning for people who use drugs and COVID-19 and has been shared with all Alcohol and Drug Partnerships and all drug services in Scotland | SDF, UK

Mitigating and learning from the impact of COVID‐19 infection on addictive disorders (PDF)

The COVID-19 pandemic and the measures required to address it are cutting a swathe through people’s lives and the global economy. People with addictive disorders are particularly badly affected as a result of poverty, physical and mental health vulnerabilities and disruption of access to services | Addiction editorial, UK

ACMD advice on COVID-19 emergency legislation to enable supply of controlled drugs

Letter from the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD) to the Home Secretary advising on COVID-19 emergency measures to enable the supply of controlled drugs | ACMD, UK

Methadone to be handed out without prescription during Covid-19 crisis

Pharmacists to be allowed to give out super-strength medication under emergency measures | Guardian, UK

Covid 19, Alcohol & Drugs

The Covid 19 pandemic has implications across all policy areas and alcohol and drugs is no different | Scottish Community Safety Network, UK

Just say N2O – nitrous oxide misuse: essential information for psychiatrists

Nitrous oxide misuse is widespread in the UK | Cambridge Core, UK

Local Alcohol Profiles for England (LAPE): April 2020 update

Update of Indicators in the Local Alcohol Profiles for England (LAPE) interactive tool | PHE, UK

Clinical guide for the management of people with alcohol dependence during the coronavirus pandemic (PDF)

As clinicians, we all have general responsibilities in relation to coronavirus and we should seek and act on national and local guidelines. We also have a specific responsibility to ensure that essential care continues with the minimum burden on the NHS. We must engage with those planning our local response | NHS, UK

How are British drinking habits shifting under lockdown?

YouGov Plan and Track data shows that while pubs and restaurants are closed, the demand for alcohol among Britons persists | YouGov, UK

SURE Recovery app

Please help us to understand how Covid-19 is affecting your use of alcohol and other drugs and your access to treatment. The SURE recovery app has been developed by researchers at King’s College London and people in recovery. It is free and has just been updated so that you can tell us how things are for you during this period of social isolation. Just download the updated app from the App Store or Google Play | Kings College London, UK

COVID-19: Risk of increase in smoking rates among England’s 6 million smokers and relapse among England’s 11 million ex-smokers

As a practising GP, I am concerned about those who might get seriously unwell due to the respiratory virus SARS-CoV-2. As a member of the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP), I join hands with the public health and other healthcare communities to focus on acute measures in this time of national emergency to save lives from COVID-19 | BJGP, UK