Daily news - 6th July 2017

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UK news

The intervention effect of local alcohol licensing policies on hospital admission and crime: a natural experiment using a novel Bayesian synthetic time-series method

[Open access] Control of alcohol licensing at local government level is a key component of alcohol policy in England. There is, however, only weak evidence of any public health improvement. We used a novel natural experiment design to estimate the impact of new local alcohol licensing policies on hospital admissions and crime | BMJ, UK

Heroin clinics and 'fix' rooms 'could be way forward' for North Wales, says crime boss

Police and Crime Commissioner Arfon Jones believes facilities, similar to those he visited in Switzerland, would save lives | Daily Post, UK

Women Talk About Picking Up Drugs for the First Time Alone

When you've grown up relying on boyfriends and male mates to get high, picking up by yourself is weirdly exhilarating | VICE, UK

How to make a short film

The Recovery Street Film Festival gives individuals who have a lived experience of recovering from drug or alcohol addiction a platform with which they can tell their own stories through short films. However, for someone who’s never attempted this before, making a film may seem like an almost impossible task | Recovery Street Film Festival, UK

Lifeline Project

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if the Government will make an assessment of the lessons to be learned for the payment-by-results contract model for support services from the closing down of drugs and alcohol charity Lifeline | They work for you, UK

Tobacco Control Plan

When the Government plan to publish a tobacco control plan | They work for you, UK

Driving under Influence

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what the average time taken is to analyse (a) blood and (b) urine samples for (i) drug-related and (ii) alcohol-related driving offences | They work for you, UK


To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many cases of human trafficking Eurojust has supported the Government in investigating in each year since 2010 | They work for you, UK

Illegal cigarette market costs UK taxpayer nearly £2bn, study finds

A whopping €2.1bn (£1.84bn) in extra tax would have gone into UK coffers if the billions of illicit and counterfeit cigarettes consumed in the UK were sold legally, a report has found | Telegraph, UK

People who vape ‘still deemed a smoker by insurers’

Cover could be invalidated if they class themselves as a non-smoker | Health Insurance Daily, UK

Phoenix collaborate on ground breaking new BBC documentary

Phoenix Futures have been working with an award winning TV Production Company and the BBC to produce a ground breaking 2 part documentary that shows life inside the country’s only rehab for mums, dads and children | Phoenix Futures, UK

CGL launches updated and refreshed website

CGL has made some significant improvements to the structure, content and look and feel of its website in order to better meet the needs of its users | CGL, UK

Drink Wise Age Well survey

We are inviting our colleagues who work in the substance misuse field, health and social care sector, in both voluntary and statutory organisations, to share any experiences or knowledge they have had of ageism and age discrimination towards older people with alcohol problems. This is a short survey that should not take longer than 15 minutes | Drink Wise Age Well, UK

Bangor drug rehabilitation centre helped 'put my life back together', says recovering addict

John Redican, 46, says Penrhyn House gave him 'fresh hope' after his 30 year addiction almost drove him to suicide | Daily Post, UK

Another Drug Gang Foiled After Posing with Cocaine and Cash

You'd have thought, by now, that drug dealers would have learned that taking photos of themselves holding the proceeds of their crimes was generally an absolutely terrible idea | VICE, UK

Man admits having £300,000 of drugs in Whitburn

A drug trafficker has admitted having amphetamine worth more than £300,000 when police spotted him carrying heavy shopping bags in West Lothian | BBC, UK


International news

Some psychiatrists think cannabis can be considered a psychedelic drug like shrooms — here's why

Marijuana isn't typically thought of as a psychedelic — a drug that produces hallucinations or an apparent expansion of consciousness | Business Insider, UK

AlphaBay: Dark Web drugs marketplace mysteriously goes offline

Some users are speculating that the operators have pulled an exit scam | Independent, UK

Dutch bank bans loans to tobacco industry on health grounds

Decision by ABN Amro, which has six millions customers worldwide, is the first by a major bank in The Netherlands | Guardian, UK

San Francisco is first US city to ban flavoured tobacco products

Starting next April, the ban covers any tobacco product with a “distinguishable taste or aroma”, including menthol cigarettes and flavoured vape fluids. Its backers say it will protect certain minorities | New Scientist, UK

Mexican cartel shootout leaves 26 dead or wounded in latest violent clash

Experts say that security has deteriorated in recent months as criminal groups squabble over the remains of the empire once controlled by kingpin El Chapo | Guardian, UK

A performance measurement framework for drug and alcohol task forces

This study is about the development of a Performance Measurement Framework for the Drug and Alcohol Task Forces (DATF). The latter are community-based structures which bring together Government Departments, State Agencies and the Community and Voluntary sectors to provide a collective response to problem substance use | Trutz Haase – Social & Economic Consultants, Ireland

Dublin businesses considering legal challenge to drug injection centres

Businesses in Dublin are considering legal challenges against government laws which will allow supervised drug injection centres in the city centre | Irish Examiner, Ireland

Woman would not have died if methadone provided ‘down the country’

Charity says young mother from Midlands one of many coming to Dublin to get drug | Irish Times, Ireland

French PM to raise price of pack of cigarettes to €10

The cost of lighting up at a French sidewalk cafe may finally dissuade even the most ardent smoker, if Prime Minister Edouard Phillippe gets his way | RFi, France

Doctors and nurses can't always tell if someone's drunk or on drugs, and misdiagnosis can be dangerous

Bob has arrived at the emergency department at 10am on a Tuesday after breaking several fingers slamming his hand in a car door. Bob is quite anxious; he speaks quickly and paces around | Medical Xpress, USA

Marijuana and vulnerability to psychosis

Going from an occasional user of marijuana to a weekly or daily user increases an adolescent's risk of having recurrent psychotic-like experiences by 159 percent, according to a new Canadian study published today in the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry | Medical Xpress, USA

Binge drinking accelerates alcohol use disorder, but stable daily drinking may be just as risky in the long-term

Binge drinking may increase people’s risk of developing alcohol use disorders (AUDs), especially adolescents and young adults, research shows. It is unclear whether different drinking patterns – for example, intermittent versus regular drinking – have a different impact on the compulsive drinking that characterizes people with AUDs | Science Daily, USA

RCMP teach police dogs to find fentanyl

A workshop at the RCMP's dog training centre in Alberta has attracted officers and animals from police forces across the continent eager to see the centre's pioneering work tackling the scourge of fentanyl | The Spec, USA

About the Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act

Download and display the poster on the Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act to help raise awareness about the new law and the importance of calling 911 and/or emergency services in case of an overdose | Canadian Government, Canada

Gambling related community harm exceeds that of drug use

Study finds gambling related community harm exceeds that of drug use disorders and common physical health problems | Scoop, New Zealand


Blogs, comment and opinion

Marijuana age limit should be low - not high

Lowering the legal age for marijuana use will help to improve prevention, safety and education for young people | Conversation, Canada

E-cigarettes are some young people’s training wheels for smoking. Here’s the evidence

I started on mother’s milk, soon graduated to cow’s milk, went onto fizzy drinks, took a liking to beer, moved with gusto onto wine, and in my 30s settled for single malt. So, did my mother’s breast milk lead me to Scotch whisky? Was it a “gateway” to all the devil’s best tunes later in life? | Conversation, Australia