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Weekly news - 13th May 2022

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Inside one of the first licensed medical cannabis labs in Britain

Under tightly controlled conditions, Celadon Pharmaceuticals’ site will initially focus on chronic pain treatments | Guardian, UK

Medicinal cannabis users prosecuted as drug-driving arrests double in four years

[Limited number of free articles per month] Patients are being ‘demonised’ as they face arrest even though medical studies show their driving capability is not impaired | Telegraph, UK

Campaigners march through Cardiff calling for legalisation of cannabis

Campaigners marched through Cardiff city centre to Cardiff Bay on Saturday calling for the legalisation of cannabis in the UK. Organised by Terry Wakefield, from Cardiff, the protest – the first to happen in Wales since 2019 due to Covid – included around 300 marchers also calling for more openness and education around the use of the drug | Wales Online, UK

Europe’s first psychedelic drug trial firm to open in London

Startup Clerkenwell Health hopes to help make UK a world leader in psychedelics research | Guardian, UK

The impact of lower strength alcohol products on alcohol purchases: ARIMA analyses based on 4 million purchases by 69 803 households, 2015–2019

[Open access] Lowering the strength of alcohol products could lead to less alcohol being bought and drunk. In its prevention White Paper, the UK Government aims to promote a significant increase in the availability of alcohol-free and low-alcohol products by 2025 | Journal of Public Health, UK

The UK’s first regular drug checking service set to launch in Bristol this month

The UK’s first Home Office licensed regular drug checking service is set to launch in Bristol this month, delivered by leading non-profit harm reduction organisation The Loop. In partnership with Bristol City Council, The Loop will be bringing its pioneering service, which combines personalised health advice with drug testing, to central Bristol | The Loop, UK

Sadiq Khan launches commission to examine cannabis legality

Mayor of London says panel of experts will consider effectiveness of UK policies on non-class A drugs | Guardian, UK

Introducing the Drugs Venn – the new, simplified way to classify drugs by effect

The Drugs Venn, a new model seeking to simplify and improve the classification of drugs by their effects building on the most useful aspects of the existing Drugs Wheel and Drugs Pyramid, was revealed in an academic paper co-authored by the University of Liverpool | University of Liverpool, UK

Jump-starting the conversation about harm reduction: making sense of drug effects

This paper describes the history of the development of taxonomies of psychoactive drug use, and discusses the conceptualization of three recent taxonomies: comparing their features, and considering their application in education, treatment, and harm reduction settings | Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy, UK

Medication Assisted Treatment Standards

To ask the First Minister whether the medication assisted treatment standards have been fully embedded across Scotland | They work for you, UK

‘Completely devastating’: US passes 1m overdose deaths since records began

2021 was a record year for overdose deaths with an estimated 107,622, CDC says, an increase of 15% from the previous year | Guardian, UK

The importance of PEOPLE who use drugs within drug policy reform debates: Findings from the UK Drug Policy Voices online survey

[Open access] Drug Policy Voices is a UK-based project designed to integrate the voices and experiences of people who use drugs (PWUD) into debates about drug policy reform. An online survey was conducted in 2020 to understand opinions connected to drug use and drug policy... This paper asks, what values do people who use drugs hold surrounding drug use and drug policy, and what factors predict these values? | IJDP, UK