Weekly news - 29th 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:

Exclusive: Fears over footballers mixing sleeping pills with alcohol to get legal high

[Free registration maybe required.] [Harry Shapiro of DrugWise quoted.] The drugs are not on Wada's banned list and players are using them recreationally | Telegraph, UK

Free Annual Conference 2020: What does good look like during and after COVID-19?

Now, more than ever, NHS and voluntary sector providers, service users, commissioners, volunteers and other stakeholders need the opportunity to come together, collaborate, discuss, inspire and learn from each other. NHS SMPA is determined to provide a platform for this to happen. We are therefore pleased to announce that our 2020 Annual Conference will now be delivered online and for free on the 9th September | NHS Substance Misuse Provider Alliance, UK

MUP two year anniversary; IAS briefing & impact of families MESAS report

The 1st of the month marked two years since the introduction of Scotland's Minimum Unit Pricing (MUP). The Institute of Alcohol Studies (IAS) released a briefing Minimum Unit Pricing in Scotland: What we know so far about its effects on consumption and health harms [pdf]. The executive summary states "media reports have been mixed, with some claiming the policy has been a success and others claiming it has been a failure. This briefing attempts to summarise this evidence | IAS, UK

Alcohol, smoking, and other substance use in the perinatal period

Many women use substances during pregnancy. For example, the global prevalence of alcohol consumption during pregnancy is 9.8%. Moreover, 10.4% of pregnant women in England were known to be smoking tobacco at the time of deliver | BMJ, UK

County Lines after COVID - a new threat?

Since the COVID-19 lockdown began, the received wisdom reported in the media has been that the threat from county lines operated by organised crime groups (OCGs) and gangs would reduce | Crest Advisory, UK

Needle and drug click-and-collect service set up by treatment charity

An online click-and-collect service for needles and drug equipment has been set up by a national treatment charity as the sector seeks to adapt to the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic | Guardian, UK

Evaluating the impact of alcohol minimum unit pricing in Scotland: Observational study of small retailers

The Scottish Government’s minimum unit pricing policy has been implemented as intended by small retailers in Scotland, according to new research carried out by the University of Stirling | University of Stirling, UK

British newborn first baby in world to join cannabis therapy trial

Norwich hospital in Europe-wide trial using plant ingredients to counter risk of seizures and brain injury | Guardian, UK

Coronavirus: Lockdown leaves addicts 'close to relapse'

It is not just shops and hospitality businesses that have had to close their doors during lockdown. Social-distancing restrictions have also made it difficult for many counselling services to operate | BBC, UK

‘A chaotic cycle of abuse and crime’: The truth behind prescription drugs and prisons

The picture we have of the prison estate’s drug epidemic is far from complete and, crucially, overlooks the policy of prescribing and dispensing synthetically-produced opiates for addicted inmates | Independent, UK

The treatment organisation is the healing context

Key research on how alcohol treatment organisations create an environment affecting whether staff and patients realise their potential. Introduces the resource which has done most to promote evidence-based improvements in treatment organisations, highlights “Exceptionally seminal” British studies from the early 1970s, and explores what makes a service engaging and effective and how best to organise extended care | Drug and Alcohol Findings, UK

EMCDDA webinar: Prevention of drug-related problems in the time of COVID-19: what can we learn?

4th June, 13.00 -14.00. The EMCDDA is offering a new series of webinars around the theme of COVID-19. The purpose of the webinars is to help those working in the drugs field understand how drug users, and those supporting them, are coping with the pandemic and to share knowledge and experience | EMCDDA, Portugal

Statistics on NHS Stop Smoking Services in England - April 2019 to December 2019

This quarterly report presents results from the monitoring of the NHS Stop Smoking Services in England during the period April 2019 to December 2019 | NHS Digital, UK

Users of high-potency cannabis four times more likely to report associated problems

Users of high-potency cannabis are four times more likely to report associated problems, and twice as likely to report anxiety disorder, than users of lower-potency strains, according to new research from the University of Bristol | University of Bristol, UK

Association of the Covid-19 lockdown with smoking, drinking, and attempts to quit in England: an analysis of 2019-2020 data

[Preprint] In England, prevalence of high-risk drinking but not smoking has increased since the Covid-19 lockdown. Smokers and high-risk drinkers are more likely than before lockdown to report trying to quit smoking or reduce their alcohol consumption, and rates of smoking cessation are higher | Medrxiv, UK

World No Tobacco Day 2020

The global campaign will debunk myths and expose devious tactics employed by these industries. It will provide young people with the knowledge required to easily detect industry manipulation and equip them with the tools to rebuff such tactics, thereby empowering young people to stand up against them | WHO, Switzerland