Weekly news - 15th May 2020

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Coronavirus frequently updated resources

COVID-19 and addiction: webinars, podcasts and online discussions | SSA

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

COVID-19 Information Hub | Scottish Drugs Forum

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

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

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


In date order, Monday to Friday:

COVID-19 is changing the route of illicit drug flows, says UNODC report

Measures implemented by governments to curb the COVID-19 pandemic have led to drug trafficking routes by air being disrupted, along with drastic reduction or increased interdiction in trafficking routes over land. Some drug supply chains have been interrupted and traffickers are looking for alternative routes, including maritime routes, depending on the types of drugs smuggled. These are some of the findings from a report on drug market trends during COVID-19, launched today by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime | UNODC, Austria

Why you might be drinking too much during lockdown

Confined to our homes with little else to do, it is tempting to turn to the bottle for entertainment, but rather than making us feel better, it may be doing us harm | BBC Future, UK

Fears as Government prepares to roll out alternative to methadone

Drug charities have said they will be closely monitoring plans announced by the Scottish Government to switch some methadone users in prisons on to a weekly or monthly alternative, after raising concerns with officials | National, UK

State of the Sector 2019: Drug and Alcohol Family Support (PDF)

Almost one in three adults in Great Britain have been negatively affected by the substance use of someone they know, and one in ten describe themselves as currently affected. Providing support to families has been shown to improve the chances that their loved one will enter, and remain in, treatment. But equally important is the right to support for themselves. Adfam’s State of the Sector Family Support Survey aims to shine a light on current circumstances and practice | Adfam, UK

New Practice Briefing: FDACs under COVID-19

The Centre's Deputy-Director, Vicki Morris, introduces the new practice briefing 'Family Drug and Alcohol Courts under Covid-19' | Centre for Justice Innovation, UK

Coronavirus: Government funds study into how pubs could open

Researchers at the University of Stirling are to look at how pubs, clubs and restaurants could safely reopen | BBC, UK

Almost half a million smokers will quit as a result of the menthol ban, study reveals

Almost 40% of menthol smokers – equivalent to 450,000 current smokers – will quit when the Menthol Ban comes into force on 20 May 2020, new research reveals | Talking Retail, UK

Coronavirus: Lockdown could bring hope for drugs gang teens

The lockdown could help teenagers caught up in drug violence turn their lives around, an experienced inner-city youth worker says | BBC, UK

Practitioners’ views on the impact of MUP on protecting children and young people

This briefing and report discuss the findings of a study on the impact of MUP on protecting children and young people from the harm caused by parents' or carers' harmful alcohol use | Public Health Scotland, UK

Drinking and wellbeing in lockdown - survey of Club Soda members

Behaviour science and listening to our members are really important values at the heart of Club Soda. We’ve based everything we do on a scientific foundation and user-led design | Club Soda, UK

Covid-19 and Smoking: Act Now to Prevent a Health Calamity from Happening

Dr Pooja Patwardhan is a GP and the Clinical Director of the Centre for Health Research and Education (CHRE), working globally on tobacco cessation with a mantra of ‘Bridging the Policy and Practice gap’. Here, she provides practical tools for all health care professionals and public health bodies, to empower and support smokers to quit smoking, and prevent ex-smokers from relapsing back to smoking, during and after the Covid-19 outbreak | RSPH, UK

Updated guidance for contingency planning for services during COVID-19 published

The guidance, developed to support people who plan and/or deliver services, has been designed to ensure that essential treatment and harm reduction services for this vulnerable population are maintained to a high standard in the challenging circumstances of the pandemic | SDF, UK

Updated Guidance: COVID-19: Advice for heavy drinkers who are thinking about cutting back or stopping drinking alcohol

SHAAP has updated its advice for heavy drinkers who are planning to cut back or stop drinking in the context of COVID-19 | SHAAP, UK

Updated Guidance: Coronavirus (COVID-19) and People with Alcohol-related Problems: Recommendations for Services

SHAAP has updated its recommendations for services supporting people with alcohol-related problems, including ADPs, Commissioners, Alcohol Service Managers, Community Services and Mutual Aid and Support Groups, to enable them to reduce risks and ensure continued support in the COVID-19 context | SHAAP, UK

Six tips from a naloxone expert - video

Advice and guidance on using naloxone | SURE Recovery, UK

COVID-19: New EMCDDA study highlights drop in availability of drug services in Europe but increase in innovation

As Europe grapples with the unprecedented public health threat posed by COVID-19, how is the outbreak affecting drug users and service providers? In a new study published today — Impact of COVID-19 on drug services and help-seeking in Europe — the EMCDDA reports signs of a drop in the availability of drug services during the pandemic and in the numbers of those seeking help | EMCDDA, Portugal

Lockdown leads to increases in secondhand smoke exposure for children

Health campaigners are warning that new evidence suggests lockdown has left more children exposed to the harms of secondhand smoke | Smokefree Action, UK

Oxfordshire plan to be first 'smoke-free' county agreed

Authorities will look to ensure that less than 5% of its adult population smoke - half of the current total | BBC, UK

Death of despair (PDF)

More Americans could lose their lives to deaths of despair, deaths due to drug, alcohol, and suicide, if we do not do something immediately. Deaths of despair have been on the rise for the last decade, and in the context of COVID-19, deaths of despair should be seen as the epidemic within the pandemic. The goal of this report is to predict what deaths of despair we might see based on three assumptions during COVID-19: economic recovery, relationship between deaths of despair and unemployment, and geography | Wellbeing Trust, USA

Coronavirus: How the pandemic is relaxing US drinking laws

Coronavirus has Americans picking up two new summer accessories: a mask and an alcoholic to-go drink | BBC, UK

Assessing the Evidence on Supervised Drug Consumption Sites

Current levels of opioid-related morbidity and mortality in the United States are staggering. Data for 2017 indicate that there were more than 47,000 opioid-involved overdose deaths (roughly similar to deaths from AIDS at its peak in 1995), and 1 in 8 adults now report having had a family member or close friend die from opioids | RAND, USA

2,200 deaths, 32,000 hospital admissions, 15.7 billion dollars: what opioid misuse costs Australia in a year

In a single year, extra-medical opioid use caused more than 2,200 deaths, 32,000 hospital admissions and resulted in the loss of over 70,000 years of life in Australia | Conversation, Australia