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Reports: June

Final report published on the impact of MUP on people drinking at harmful levels, including those dependent on alcohol

Among those drinking at harmful levels or people with alcohol dependence, the study found no clear evidence of a change in consumption or severity of dependence. Findings also showed that some economically vulnerable groups experienced increased financial strain as the price rises meant they were spending more on alcohol. This led some people who were dependent on alcohol to reduce other expenditure, such as that on food and utilities | Public Health Scotland, UK

Alcohol and other drug use among children and young people in Ireland: prevalence, risk and protective factors, consequences, responses, and policies

Findings from the latest HRB report reveal that adolescents are starting to drink alcohol at a later age – but one-in-three young drinkers has an alcohol use disorder. The data highlights an increase in substance-related hospitalisations among young people and that treatment for cocaine use among young people increased by 171% between 2011 and 2019. It also shows a clear link between mental ill health and substance use, evident across data on anxiety, self-harm and suicide | HRB, Ireland

The Khan review: making smoking obsolete

Independent review by Dr Javed Khan OBE into the government’s ambition to make England smokefree by 2030 | OHID, UK

N-Cyclohexyl Butylone (PDF)

N-Cyclohexyl butylone is classified as a novel stimulant and substituted cathinone. Substituted cathinones are modified based on the structure of cathinone, an alkaloid found in the Khat plant. Novel stimulants have been reported to cause psychoactive effects similar to amphetamines | NPS Discovery, USA

Illicit Drug Toxicity Deaths in BC (PDF)

This report summarizes all unintentional illicit drug toxicity deaths in British Columbia (accidental and undetermined) that occurred between January 1, 2012, and April 30, 2022, inclusive. It includes confirmed and suspected illicit toxicity deaths | BC Coroner's Service, Canada

Suspected drug deaths in Scotland: January to March 2022

In January 2021 the Scottish Government announced a National Mission to reduce Scotland’s unacceptable drug death rates. Part of this commitment is to improve data and surveillance. This report focusses on management information from Police Scotland on suspected drug deaths, to provide as timely an indication of current trends in drug deaths in Scotland as is possible. Statistics from the National Records of Scotland are also presented for wider context | Scottish Government, UK

Drugs strategy guidance for local delivery partnersFrom 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

Drug supply and use bounce back after COVID-19 disruption

The rapid bounce back of drug supply and use following COVID-19 disruption is among the issues highlighted today by the EU drugs agency (EMCDDA) as it launches its European Drug Report 2022: Trends and Developments (1). The report delivers the latest overview of the drug situation in Europe, exploring long-term trends and emerging threats. At a time when the international situation raises new challenges, the report also looks at how ongoing global events may affect the dynamics of Europe’s drugs problem in future | EMCDDA, Portugal

What are the lessons to be learnt from the European Drug Report 2022?

The European Drug Report 2022: Trends and Developments arrives at a time when recent major global events have impacted profoundly on all areas of our life and, therefore, also have implications for the drug problems we are facing in Europe today. Our report is designed to help Europe be better prepared to meet these challenges. It does this by analysing both the trends that are shaping the current situation, and by identifying emerging threats that may impact on the drug problems Europe will face in the future | EMCDDA, Portugal

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

National Drug Treatment Reporting System 2015 – 2021 drug treatment data

In this bulletin, trends in treated problem drug use (excluding alcohol) are described for the seven-year period from 2015 to 2021. The data are drawn from the National Drug Treatment Reporting System (NDTRS), the national surveillance system that records and reports on cases of drug and alcohol treatment in Ireland | HRB, Ireland

ACMD Naloxone Review

The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs has undertaken a review of the availability and implementation of naloxone in the UK | ACMD, UK

RADAR: Rapid Action Drug Alerts and Response

In an effort to respond to the public health emergency of drug-related deaths in Scotland, RADAR provides a structured way to collect, assess and communicate information about drugs, identifying risks quickly and informing rapid action to reduce harm and save lives | Public Health Scotland, UK

Government of Canada proposes new disclosure requirements on vaping product sales and ingredients

Canada’s vaping market is evolving rapidly. A large number of vaping substances are available across the country and new formulations are frequently introduced with new flavours. Health Canada is restricted in its capacity to properly track market trends due to limited access to information on vaping products sales and composition | Government of Canada, Canada

Cannabis Legalization: 2021–2022 Observations (Policy Brief)

Examines evidence on the impact and implementation of the 2018 Cannabis Act. The report explores progress toward the act’s public health and safety objectives. Policy makers, public health professionals and researchers involved in cannabis regulation will find the report informative. Continuing to monitor and learn from the evolution of the regulated cannabis market in Canada remains essential to informing policy and public health, both in Canada and internationally | CCSA, Canada

Latest information on alcohol consumption, price and harms in Scotland published

Public Health Scotland has published the MESAS Monitoring Report 2022, as part of the continued delivery of the Monitoring and Evaluating Scotland’s Alcohol Strategy (MESAS) programme. This annual report provides the latest available information and key statistics on alcohol consumption, price, related harms and inequalities | Public Health Scotland, UK

Public Health and Smoking: A framework for action (PDF)

This report is a practical document, designed to drive action locally, regionally and nationally across sectors. It is for people and organisations developing plans and strategies to improve mental and physical health in our communities, particularly those working to implement public mental health approaches to prevent poor mental health in society | ASH et al

Is there a causal effect of smoking on Mental Health?

In this report, we summarise evidence around two key questions about smoking and mental health: 1) does smoking increase the risk of subsequent mental health problems, and 2) does quitting smoking improve mental health symptoms. Establishing whether or not these are true causal effects will help to better target successful public health policies and to hopefully increase life expectancy and improve health amongst individuals with mental illness | University of Bristol, UK

No place for cheap alcohol: the potential value of minimum pricing for protecting lives

There has been growing interest in recent years in a relatively new form of pricing policy to decrease alcohol affordability and consequently consumption – minimum pricing. This report discusses this (‎as yet)‎ not widely used policy and its potential for improving public health andexamines how minimum pricing policies should be applied alongside alcohol taxation measures. It reviews the status of implementation of minimum pricing globally, provides an overview of the most recent evidence behind the policy, addresses its main strengths and limitations and offers practical considerations for countries | WHO, Denmark


CH-FUBIATA is classified as a synthetic cannabinoid. Synthetic cannabinoids have been reported to cause psychoactive effects similar to delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) | NPS Discovery, USA

This report, commissioned by the Department of Health and Social Care, draws on 60 interviews with commissioners, providers, and Public Health England representatives to provide a detailed analysis of the first quarter in which funding was available. Prominent themes include: the treatment context prior to the arrival of additional funding; plans to deploy the funding; barriers to implementation (prominently including national shortages of skilled staff); identified solutions; the challenges of one-year fixed-term funding; and the sustainability of initiatives should one-year funding end | University of York, The Kings Fund, UK

Residential rehabilitation pathways: lived experience interviews

Explores pathways into, through and out of residential rehabilitation from the perspective of those with lived experience of having accessed residential rehabilitation. Part of a wider suite of research exploring residential rehabilitation across Scotland | Scottish Government, UK

UNODC World Drug Report 2022 highlights trends on cannabis post-legalization, environmental impacts of illicit drugs, and drug use among women and youth

Cannabis legalization in parts of the world appears to have accelerated daily use and related health impacts, according to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC)’s World Drug Report 2022. Released today, the report also details record rises in the manufacturing of cocaine, the expansion of synthetic drugs to new markets, and continued gaps in the availability of drug treatments, especially for women | UNODC, Austria

Health profiles for English regions: 2021

These profiles bring together data and knowledge to give a broad picture of health in the nine English regions. The reports provide a regional view of health and indicators presented in the Health Profile for England 2021. [Includes risk profiles associated with ill health, such as smoking, alcohol and other drug use] | OHID, UK

Hodges Review: a review of UK public policy; regulatory stewardship of the legal cannabis industry

In February this year following a series of meetings with Ministers, advisers and senior officials in Whitehall the Centre of Medicinal Cannabis and the Association for the Cannabinoid Industry commissioned Oxford University’s Professor Christopher Hodges to oversee a comprehensive review of the UK legal cannabinoid industry with a particular regard to how public policy and regulation can support the sector’s growth and development. [Please note that to receive the report you must enter an email address on the website linked to above] | Hodges Review, UK

Interim monitoring report on statutory funded residential rehabilitation placements

This is the third report on Residential Rehabilitation within the Monitoring and Evaluation Programme led by Public Health Scotland. The report presents information on the number of Alcohol and Drug Partnership statutory funded placements into residential rehabilitation, with estimated costs, that were approved between 1st April 2021 and 31st March 2022 | Public Health Scotland, UK

National drug and alcohol treatment waiting times: 1 January 2022 to 31 March 2022

This data release by Public Health Scotland reports on waiting times for people accessing specialist drug and alcohol treatment services between 1 January and 31 March 2022. In 2011, the Scottish Government set a Standard that 90% of people referred for help with problematic drug or alcohol use will wait no longer than three weeks for specialist treatment that supports their recovery | Public Health Scotland, UK

Realising our rights: How to protect people from alcohol marketing (PDF)

Exposure to alcohol marketing causes consumption. Alcohol marketing encourages positive attitudes towards alcohol, influences our drinking behaviour and creates a culture where regular alcohol consumption is considered normal and desirable | Alcohol Focus Scotland, UK

Multiple disadvantage and co-occurring substance use and mental health conditions (PDF)

This briefing is informed by conversations with local areas from across the MEAM Approach and Fulfilling Lives networks, providing an in-depth understanding of the difficulties faced by support services - including homelessness, drug and alcohol and 3 mental health services - in meeting the needs of individuals with co-occurring conditions, as well as partnership-working, good practice and changes over time | MEAM, UK

Prohibited Plants: Environmental Justice in Drug Policy

As scholarship and activism on ‘environmental justice’ points out, poorer and marginalised communities face particular exposure to environmental harms. This holds particularly true for populations in the global South. The role of illicit drugs in relation to these environmental stresses is an underexplored terrain. Yet, as this report will argue, drugs, as well as the policy responses to them, are an environmental issue | TNI, The Netherlands

Changing Lives and Saving Lives Impact Report 2021-22 (PDF)

The theme of this year’s Impact Report – Changing Lives and Saving Lives – is a very bold claim for any organisation to make. But it is an echo of what families tell us about the difference we are making across Scotland every day | SFAD, UK

All Party Parliamentary Group on Complex Needs and Dual Diagnosis: Alcohol Related Deaths – A Briefing Note (PDF)

Current data shows an increase in alcoho lrelated risk, consumption, hospitalisations and deaths. Guest speakers explored this unprecedented rise and the ways in which the government, services and society can help reduce the avoidable harm we continue to see | APPG, UK