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Daily news - 1st March 2022

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UK news

New section of the DrugWise website on Lived Experience

With the support of CGL, DrugWise is opening up a new area of our site called Lived Experience. This is a pilot project with the specific aim of providing signposts to help and advice for anyone who would identify themselves as having LE. Please look at the content so far and let us know your thoughts and suggestions at livedexperience@drugwise.org.uk | DrugWise, UK

Deaths related to volatile substances, helium and nitrogen in England and Wales: 2001 to 2020 registrations

Deaths related to volatile substances, helium and nitrogen in England and Wales registered between 2001 and 2020, by region, sex, age, substances involved and cause of death | ONS, UK


The idea is simple, people who are using drugs alone can download the app and be connected to a Cranstoun volunteer, with whom they can build a rescue plan in the event of an emergency | Cranstoun, UK

Overcoming the pains of recovery: the management of negative recovery capital during addiction recovery pathways

[Open access] Recovery is experienced in both positive and negative ways and this paper attempts to integrate the ‘pains of desistance’ approach into a recovery capital framework. Pains experienced as a result of negative recovery capital are often thought to stimulate motivations for positive behavioral change, usually through a ‘rock bottom’ type moment | Addiction, Research and Theory, UK

Association between smoking, e-cigarette use and severe COVID-19: a cohort study 

[Open access] Smoking is a risk factor for most respiratory infections, but it may protect against SARS-CoV-2 infection. The objective was to assess whether smoking and e-cigarette use were associated with severe COVID-19 | International Journal of Epidemiology, UK

Medicinal Cannabis: The plant could be used to treat Crohn’s disease and other conditions

The medicinal cannabis conversation is changing. As more evidence is gathered, the benefits of the cannabis plant are becoming increasingly apparent. Express.co.uk recently spoke to two members of the Volteface team, one of the leading advocacy groups, about their work and the potential that medicinal cannabis has to help thousands, if not millions, of lives | Express, USA

Addiction Audio: ADHD and maternal substance use with Elis Haan - podcast

Dr Elis Haan talks to Dr Rob Calder about ADHD and maternal substance use. Elis discusses her recent paper exploring the impact of alcohol, caffeine and tobacco during pregnancy on ADHD outcomes in young people | SSA, UK

Tributes paid to Scottish independence activist and drug expert Rowdy Yates

Rowdy Yates MBE drew on his own experience of heroin addiction to become a respected voice in treatment and recovery across a career spanning more than 50 years | National, UK

Radical Social Work Approaches to Scotland's Drug & Alcohol Issues

Wed, 9 March 2022, 13:00 – 14:00 GMT. Our latest webinar on radical social work approaches to Scotland's social issues looks at drugs and alcohol issues | Stephen Smellie, Convenor, UNISON Scotland SWIG, UK

Last three members of Nottingham 'party drugs' gang sentenced

The final three members of a gang that focused on supplying young people with "party drugs" have been jailed | BBC, UK

Magilligan Prison: Illicit drug use is key concern

Random drug testing had an average higher rate of positives than at most similar prisons, a report found | BBC, UK


International news

Mother writes brutally honest obituary for son who died of drug overdose

‘Silence would mean Hunter’s death was in vain, but if one person’s life is saved by his story, we would tell it a million more times,’ writes Christy Couvillier | Independent, UK

Jonathan Rhys Meyers to avoid jail and pay $500 fine after entering plea deal over DUI arrest, legal documents show

Actor pleaded guilty to a reckless driving charge, while two for driving under the influence were dropped in deal | Independent, UK

The Global Drug Policy Index – 5 key takeaways from UNITE’s Global Policy Summit Session

At the UNITE Global Summit, Harm Reduction International hosted a session launching the first-ever Global Drug Policy Index (GDPI). The GDPI was launched to document, measure, and compare drug policies worldwide and gives each country a score based on its harm reduction efforts | INHSU, Switzerland and Australia

DrugNet Europe - February

Latest edition of the monthly news round-up of drug and alcohol policy developments | EMCDDA, Portugal

What is harm reduction?

Harm reduction is exactly what it sounds like: reducing the harm associated with using drugs through a variety of public health interventions. But the concept relies on more than these tools and begins, at the most fundamental level, with recognizing that all people deserve safety and dignity. It does not treat drug use as a moral failing | Medical Xpress, USA

Vapers exhale from nose more often than cigarette smokers

E-cigarette vapers and hookah smokers are more than twice as likely to exhale particles through their nose compared with cigarette smokers, who favor exhaling the emissions from their mouth, a new study shows. The finding makes it plausible that the former group is at risk for inflammation and cancers of the nose, sinuses, and throat, conditions seen less often in cigarette smokers, according to the study authors | EurekAlert, USA

Watch: Adults Love Flavors, Says World-Renowned Vaping Researcher

Fruit- and other sweet-flavored e-liquids and cartridges are at the heart of a vaping policy schism | Filter Magazine, USA

Simulated Cost-effectiveness and Long-term Clinical Outcomes of Addiction Care and Antibiotic Therapy Strategies for Patients With Injection Drug Use–Associated Infective Endocarditis

 In this decision analytical modeling study simulating 4 treatment strategies among 5 million individuals with IDU-IE in the US, a validated microsimulation model suggested that outpatient parenteral antimicrobial therapy was the most cost-effective strategy for the treatment of IDU-IE. A partial oral antibiotic treatment strategy was associated with the highest treatment completion rate and was most cost-effective when methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus was not a causative pathogen | JAMA Network open, USA

Testing of nicotine vaping products

On 1 October 2021, the entry for nicotine in Schedule 4 to the Poisons Standard was amended so that it now captures all nicotine vaping products as prescription only medicines. Consumers require a prescription for all purchases of nicotine vaping products, both from Australian pharmacies and overseas websites | TGA, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Death from nitrous oxide and other volatile substances – latest official data

Drugs such as cocaine and cannabis are seldom out of the headlines, but it is rare to read about another class of drugs - volatile substances. Volatile substances cover a range of gases and chemicals that are commonly found in legal household products. Many people will be familiar with nitrous oxide (laughing gas), but these substances also include butane, glue and alkyl nitrites (poppers) | Conversation, UK

Are Psychedelic Patents Ethical?

As the revolutionary therapeutic potential of psychedelics resurfaces in popular consciousness, pharmaceutical companies are scrambling for patents over psychedelic compounds and therapies | Volteface, UK

Addressing COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy among people in Australia who regularly inject drugs

It has been one year since the COVID-19 vaccine rollout commenced in Australia, and while vaccination rates initially lagged behind other countries, over 95% of Australians aged 12 years and older are now fully vaccinated | NDARC blog, Australia