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Daily news - 14th April 2022

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Have a good Easter break. See you again on Tuesday 19th April.


UK news

Extra funding for drug and alcohol treatment: 2022 to 2023

Information about new funding to local councils to help them improve their drug and alcohol treatment and recovery systems | OHID, UK

Call for evidence for new 10-year plan to improve mental health

The 12-week call for evidence will seek views on what can be improved within the current service and build our understanding of the causes of mental ill-health | DHSC, UK

How overdose reversal drug Naloxone is saving lives across the North West

A new project being trialled in Bolton and Bury is hoping to save lives by training people how to use a drug that reverses the effects of an overdose | ITV, UK

Northern Ireland drugs death rate 'higher in more deprived areas'

Drug-related death rates in Northern Ireland's most deprived areas are more than four-and-a-half times that of least deprived areas, a new report from the Department of Health has said | BBC, UK

Cheshire and Merseyside Alcohol Inquiry report published to support system-wide approach to improve lives and reduce deaths from alcohol use

Led by Champs Public Health Collaborative on behalf of the nine local authorities in Cheshire and Merseyside, the subregion’s Alcohol Inquiry brought local citizens together to engage in an open and honest debate on having a healthier relationship with alcohol | Champs Public Health Collaborative, UK

Vaper Trails: New nicotine products and the innovation principle

The benefits of innovation are unpredictable and hard to quantify. Fear of adverse consequences can lead to excessive emphasis on risk avoidance, leading to regulation that holds back beneficial innovation. The experience in tobacco harm reduction illustrates this | IEA, UK

The surprising reason why not all lifelong smokers get lung cancer

Essentially, after smoking a lot of cigarettes for a lot of years, some people’s bodies may actually adapt to prevent their cells from becoming cancerous – at least when it comes to lung cancer | Metro, UK

Running out of credit: Mobile phone tech and the birth of county lines

What can law enforcement agencies learn from the early use of tech by the operators of county drug lines? | Crest Advisory, UK

Users of ‘date rape’ drug GHB face longer jail terms in crackdown on drink spiking

‘Some sort of justice will be felt by the numerous victims of the disgusting crime,’ says campaigner | Independent, UK

Psilocybin for depression could help brain break out of a rut, scientists say

Research shows effects of compound found in magic mushrooms can be seen weeks after treatment | Guardian, UK

Ethnopharmacology Part 2 with Dr Dennis McKenna - podcast

Tune in to this week’s episode to find out about the true significance of ethnopharmacology and a conference organised by Dennis that you’ll be able to stream online very soon | Drug Science, UK

SDF Webinar – Workforce Challenges for Drug and Alcohol Services in 2022

Friday 29 April 2022, 1.00pm – 2.45pm. Due to the public health emergency in relation to drug deaths, the necessary expansion and development of services to deliver the Medication Assisted Treatment Standards and the emphasis on providing trauma informed and ACE aware care in Scotland, it is crucial that the drug and alcohol workforce, both specialist and non-specialist, and those in other professions working with people who use drugs, are appropriately equipped to support people, and respond effectively to the challenges | SDF, UK

Alcohol Occasionals - Self-harm and alcohol use

Mon, 23 May 2022, 12:30 – 14:00 BST. Dr Amy Chandler and Annie Taylor present: "Navigating the complexity of harm and care: a qualitative study of self-harm and alcohol use" | SHAAP, UK

Gender and substance use: Thinking beyond the binary

Thu, Apr 28, 2022 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM BST. This webinar will summarise and critically appraise the extant research on substance use among transgender and non-binary people. Dr Connolly will make recommendations for clinical practice, policy, and research while highlighting the need for cultural competence and gold-standard measures of gender (modality) | ISSUP, UK

Man jailed after police seize crime gang's 250kg drug haul

A car wash owner has been jailed for seven-and-a half years after importing a large quantity of an anaesthetic used to bulk out cocaine | BBC, UK


International news

Vapers in Ireland think flavour ban would create a black market, survey shows

[Free one month trial available] More than nine in ten users of e-cigarettes in Ireland would not favour an outright ban on flavoured vapes, a new survey has found | The Times, UK

Entire Canadian flight crew jailed after reporting stash of cocaine on plane

About 200kg of cocaine worth $25m was located in aircraft’s control compartments | Independent, UK

Tobacco Act tightened to remove logos from packaging of tobacco products and electronic cigarettes

The Tobacco Act was tightened on 13 April 2022. Brand images and logos will be removed from the unit packets of tobacco products, electronic cigarettes and refill containers. The aim is to reduce the appeal of tobacco products particularly to young people. The Government proposed these amendments to the Act and the President of the Republic approved them | Finnish Government, UK

Juul settles with Washington state for $22.5 million

E-cigarette maker Juul Labs Inc has agreed to pay $22.5 million to settle a lawsuit by the state of Washington accusing it of fueling a vaping epidemic by marketing its products to appeal to minors and deceiving consumers about their addictiveness | Reuters, USA

Cross-Sectional Survey of Smoking Patterns During the COVID-19 Pandemic in a Tobacco Cessation and Lung Cancer Screening Program

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) produces a wide array of deleterious consequences, some of which are unintended. Data are sparse on whether, and if so, how, current cigarette smoking habits are affected by COVID-19. We describe changes to smoking habits and their correlates during the COVID-19 pandemic among participants in a tobacco cessation and lung cancer screening program | Ochsner Journal, USA

Alcohol Sales Were on the Rocks in Africa, Then Along Came a Twist

Before the pandemic, bars and restaurants accounted for most liquor revenue on the continent. Now companies are using influencers to get consumers drinking at home | Bloomberg, USA

Drug Users Are Writing ‘Do Not Prosecute’ Letters So Their Dealers Aren’t Punished If They Die

The letters are a response to cases where dealers are charged and sentenced like murderers when their customers overdose | VICE, Canada

Introduction to tobacco harm reduction - video

What is Tobacco Harm Reduction? Why do we need it and what are the common myths? Is it safe and does it work? This 30-minute presentation was made to the Harm Reduction Forum in Canada, 5 April 2022 | Colin Mendelsohn, Australia




Blogs, comment and opinion

Cannabis: how it affects our cognition and psychology – new research

Cannabis has been used by humans for thousands of years and is one of the most popular drugs today. With effects such as feelings of joy and relaxation, it is also legal to prescribe or take in several countries | Conversation, UK

Recovery for All: How Can Drug Treatment and Recovery Services Better Support BAME People?

Earlier this month, Volteface Director Paul and Research Officer Nicole hopped on a train to Nottingham to visit BAC-IN, a grass roots, peer-led addiction recovery service for BAME people. During our visit, we spoke to Co-founder/Managing Director Sohan Sahota and Senior Recovery Worker David Thomas to get a sense of what BAC-IN do, and how it all came about | Volteface, UK

How are Cannabis Cultural and Harm Reduction Practices Created?

Prohibitionism and the war on drugs are cultural phenomena. They are associated with and bring together notions of ethics, ideologies, modes of existing in the world and relating to it. The issues around drug use, harm reduction, prohibitionism, decriminalisation, and legalisation are all embedded in cultural practices and discourses | Talking Drugs, UK