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Daily news - 16th June 2022

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UK news

Drugs strategy guidance for local delivery partners. From harm to hope: A 10-year drugs plan to cut crime and save lives

Guidance outlining the structures and processes through which local partners in England should work together to reduce drug-related harm | Home Office, UK

Classification and scheduling of Brorphine and Metonitazene

Advice on the appropriate classification and scheduling of Brorphine and Metonitazene under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 and associated regulations | Home Office, UK

Drugs Committee - video

Coverage of the Home Affairs select committee session on drugs policy with evidence from John Campbell, chief constable of Thames Valley Police, Serena Kennedy, chief constable of Merseyside Police, David Thorne, assistant police constable of South Wales Police, Andy Dunbobbin, north Wales police and crime commissioner, Zoe Metcalfe, police, fire and crime commissioner for North Yorkshire and the City of York and David Sidwick, police and crime commissioner for Dorset, from Wednesday 15 June | BBC, UK

Contents unknown: How alcohol labelling still fails consumers (PDF)

This report is a follow-on to the Alcohol Health Alliance’s 2020 report Drinking in the dark: How alcohol labelling fails consumers.1 It looks at whether essential information, such as the low-risk drinking guidelines, ingredients, calories and other health information, is provided on alcohol labels | AHA UK, UK

New research reveals alcohol labelling continues to fail consumers

Health experts have warned that alcohol labelling continues to fail consumers, as new research reveals most alcohol packaging does not display health warnings, ingredients, calories, sugar content or nutritional information | AHA UK, UK

Alcohol labelling failing consumers, say campaigners

Information on nutritional values, ingredients and health warnings is not required on alcoholic drinks packaging in the UK | Independent, UK

The Loop details new MDMA pills in UK circulation as part of harm reduction initiative

The average strength of pills tested at last weekend's Parklife festival was 1.5 times that of the typical tablet | DJ Mag, UK

Is drug testing going to become a regular part of UK festivals?

The first festival season since the end of coronavirus restrictions is well underway - with festivalgoers looking forward to events like Glastonbury opening their gates for the first time since 2019 | ITV, UK

Characteristics of People Seeking Prescribed Cannabinoids for the Treatment of Chronic Pain: Evidence From Project Twenty 21

Prescribed cannabinoids are now legal in the UK and increasingly being used for a variety of conditions, with one of the most frequent conditions being chronic pain. This paper describes the characteristics of individuals seeking prescribed cannabinoids for the treatment of chronic pain in Project Twenty 21, a UK based real world data registry of prescribed cannabis patients | Frontiers in Pain Research, UK

Are you suffering from Long COVID? Join a local clinical trial

Medical Cannabis has been legal to prescribe in the UK since 2018 and is used to treat symptoms of several different conditions. This study will research whether a high cannabidiol (CBD) medication, containing medical cannabis oil, can improve the symptoms of Long COVID | York Press, UK

Driving Licences and Dangerous Drivers

I am grateful to the Minister for her time today, given the sensitivity of the issues that we will be discussing. While the debate could have been called on behalf of any of the estimated 1,390 families who so very sadly lost a loved one to a road death in the last year... | They work for you, UK

Ugo Monye: Rugby union must tackle 'heavy drinking culture' and 'laddish behaviour'

[Possible paywall] Monye is concerned that a deep-rooted association with alcohol could be deterring newcomers at a time when participation levels are falling | Telegraph, UK

Addiction Audio: Gambling, risk-taking and alcohol with Tori Horn

Tori talks about the moderators between alcohol and risk-taking, and how her and her colleagues screened 30,000 papers to examine the influence of blood alcohol concentration, gender, the type of gambling and other factors as potential moderators of this relationship | SSA, UK

Historic English pubs recognised for their interiors

The pubs have been listed, upgraded or relisted by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport on the advice of Historic England | BBC, UK

Most Wanted drugs accused is arrested in Bulgaria

An alleged drugs supplier and one of the UK's most wanted men has been arrested at a hotel in Bulgaria | BBC, UK



International news

British men in Greek court over cocaine smuggling

Four British men have appeared in court in Greece charged with smuggling almost 300kg of Colombian cocaine, concealed in a shipment of bananas | BBC, UK

Repairing the Harms of the Drug War

June 23, 2022. 9:00–10:00 a.m. (EDT). In recognition of June 26—the Support Don’t Punish Global Day of Action—panelists from the U.S., Brazil, and the Philippines will discuss the consequences of drug policy enforcement, work to dismantle the drug war within their own communities, and how reparations are critical to creating a more just post-prohibitionist future | OSF, UK

How cannabis-fed chickens may help cut Thai farmers’ antibiotic use

Scientists observed fewer cases of avian bronchitis and superior meat after chickens given cannabis | Guardian, UK

Naloxone administration by addiction & homeless service providers in Ireland: 2018-2020. Drug insight report 2 (PDF)

The aim of the new report is to provide an assessment on the impact of the provision of naloxone, and training to addiction and homeless services. The study reviewed data collected by service providers for each incident where naloxone was administered during the period of 2018-2020, and uses cost benefit analysis calculations to demonstrate the return on the investment as a result of the Naloxone Programme over the last number of years | HSE National Social Inclusion Office, Ireland

A year in review: General Report of Activities 2021 published today

2021 was a year of transformation for the EMCDDA as the agency reached new milestones in its journey towards a customer-centric, data-driven and digitally-enabled organisation | EMCDDA, Portugal

General Report of Activities 2021 – key achievements and governance: a year in review

The General Report of Activities is an annual publication providing a detailed progress report of the EMCDDA’s activities over a 12-month period. It catalogues the Centre’s achievements in each area of its annual work programme. The report is a useful information source for all those seeking comprehensive information on the Centre and its work | EMCDDA, Portugal

No peers, no beers: Research shows youth substance use declined during the COVID-19 pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to concerns for youth mental health and social well-being, including its potential to spur substance use behaviors | Medical Xpress, USA

Bromazolam Prevalence Surging Across the United States Driven In Part by Increasing Detections Alongside Fentanyl (PDF)

The objective of this announcement is to notify public health and safety, law enforcement, first responders, clinicians, medical examiners and coroners, forensic and clinical laboratory personnel, and all other related communities about new information surrounding the emergent benzodiazepine bromazolam | NPS Discovery, USA

White House pushes strategy to slow overdoses as street drugs grow more deadly

The Biden administration says it plans to cut the number of fatal overdoses in the United States by 13 percent by 2025, potentially saving tens of thousands of lives | npr, USA

Opioid use disorder: Flexible treatment at home proves effective

Did you know that more than 26,500 Canadians died from opioid intoxication between January 2016 and September 2021? Or that more than 350,000 people who used drugs containing opioids to relieve their pain did so problematically? | Medical Xpress, Canada


Blogs, comment and opinion

Smoking age: here’s what effect raising it to 21 could have in England

Smoking is one of the leading causes of preventable death in the UK – accounting for nearly 100,000 deaths each year. In England alone, smoking caused nearly 75,000 deaths in 2020. In economic terms, smoking costs the economy an estimated £19 billion a year – with smoking-related health issues alone costing the NHS around £6 billion per year. Given the significant burden caused by smoking, it’s no wonder the government wants to make England smoke-free by 2030. Wales and Scotland have also introduced similar policies | Conversation, UK

Benzodiazepines and Post-War America

Minor tranquilisers are a class of medication known for their anti-anxiety effects. Miltown, the first of these prescription anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) drugs, quickly became a commercial success upon its debut in 1955 | Volteface, UK

Ronda Girls: How Filipino Mothers Took on the War on Drugs

A group of impacted mothers showed how an alternative to the violent drug war in the Philippines could be better at community care than killings. The self-named ronda girls hope that the recent national elections in represent will be a chance to shift away from the violence of Duterte’s regime | Talking Drugs, UK