Daily news -2nd November 2017

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Scottish cancer death rates 61% higher among poor

Death rates from cancer are 61% higher in the most deprived areas of Scotland, according to the latest figures | BBC, UK

Public focus group: Experts by experience procurement

CQC has commenced engagement activities to inform development of its future Experts by Experience programme requirements, which is to be competitively re-tendered for delivery from 2019 onwards | CQC, UK

'Hippy crack' nitrous oxide IS an illegal drug - but only when it's being used to get high, rule senior judges

The party drug known as hippy crack is not a 'medicinal product' and is illegal, senior judges ruled today | Mail Online, UK

Drones: Prisons

What steps the Government are taking to stop the use of drones over prisons | They work for you, UK

How Should Bristol Respond To Chemsex?

Free event. 28th November, 2017 at 6:30pm, Bristol | BDP, UK

Inspirado hubs - recovery game

Free admission for play dates at locations throughout the UK where recovery professionalscan have a go at a new recovery game and ask questions they may have about it | Inspirado, UK

Marking fifty years on the frontlines of the war on drugs

In 1967, Mick Jagger had been arrested for possession of cannabis – an event that coincided with an increasingly hostile drug policy in the UK (and across the world) | Virgin, UK

Cancer patients 'had Brixham cannabis plantation for pain relief'

A group of cancer patients set up a cannabis plantation to help with pain relief, a court has heard | BBC, UK

Drug-taking Herefordshire teacher banned for cocaine possession

A teacher who was cautioned for being in possession of cocaine after his home was raided by police has been banned indefinitely from the profession | BBC, UK

Pembroke mum's 'disgust' at trick or treat drugs

A mother has been left "disgusted" after her child was given unknown drugs while out trick or treating in Pembrokeshire | BBC, UK

15,000 suspected illegal cigarettes seized in Newcastle

Exclusive: Trading Standards have seized around 15,000 suspected illegal cigarettes during a series of raids in Newcastle on Tuesday as part of Operation Beagle | ITV, UK

Paul Heaton: Final Scarborough drug gang member jailed

The final member of a gang that sold heroin and other drugs on the streets of Scarborough has been jailed for 20 years after spending months on the run | BBC, UK


International news

Methadone and buprenorphine to be used to tackle US opioid crisis

The announcement came as President Trump declared the US opioid crisis as a public health emergency | Pharmaceutical Journal, UK

Opiod commission calls for more drug courts and more training for doctors

President Donald Trump’s commission on the opioid crisis called on Wednesday for more drug courts, more training for doctors and penalties for insurers that dodge covering addiction treatment | Guardian, UK

'Beer bikes': Amsterdam calls time on drunken, urinating processions

Mobile bar tables pedalled along canals by rowdy groups have been deemed too much of a nuisance by city council and courts | Guardian, UK

Experts and public disagree over plan to drug-test welfare recipients – polls

Newspoll shows majority voter support for government’s plan, while survey of drug and alcohol workers reveals most oppose | Guardian, UK

Cassie Sainsbury jailed for six years in Colombia for trafficking cocaine

Judge in Bogotá accepts plea deal between prosecutors and 22-year-old Australian, which could see her walk free in as little as three years | Guardian, UK

Policy and practice briefings: Responding to new psychoactive substances

New psychoactive substances are drugs that are not controlled under the United Nations drug control conventions but which may pose similar threats to health. These drugs include synthetic cannabinoids, opioids, stimulants and hallucinogens. Usually they are marketed as ‘legal’ replacements for the illicit drug market; while some are also used by small groups who wish to explore them for novel experiences and effects | EMCDDA, Portugal

Evidence review summary: drug demand reduction, treatment, and harm reduction

This short report presents a brief overview of recent evidence for the most effective approaches in the fields of drug use prevention, drug use treatment and harm reduction. It discusses the strengths and limitations of the evidence and some challenges for the implementation of the approaches, and it summarises the principles underpinning the successful knowledge transfer that supports the use of evidence in the development and delivery of policy and practice | EMCDDA, Portugal

Almost half of those who resolve a drinking or drug problem do so without assistance

More than 9 percent of respondents to a national survey indicate overcoming a problem, but only 46 percent of them consider themselves | Science Daily, USA

UK elimination of hepatitis C in jeopardy unless more patients found

Just one in three people with hepatitis C in the UK have been diagnosed according to the latest estimates released at this year's World Hepatitis Summit in Sao Paulo, Brazil (1-3 November) | Medical Xpress, USA

Just Say No to Opioids? Ads Could Actually Make Things Worse

The president’s idea for advertising could backfire if we don’t learn from past antidrug campaigns | NYTimes, USA

Trump opioid panel will recommend nationwide drug courts, tightened requirements for prescribers

President Trump’s commission on combating the opioid epidemic plans to encourage the federal government to establish drug courts in every federal judicial district, adjust reimbursement rates for addiction treatment, and streamline federal funding used by state and local governments to implement drug treatment and prevention programs, according to a draft of the panel’s final report | STAT News, USA

White House opioid commission calls for wide-ranging changes to anti-drug policies

The drug crisis group, led by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, recommended drug courts, better education for prescribers and medication-assisted treatment for addiction | Washington Post, USA

Opioid Crisis in North America

The opioid-driven public health crisis in North America has reached alarming proportions, contributing in 2016 to an estimated 64,000 deaths from drug overdoses in the US, and some 2,500 in Canada. The members of the Global Commission on Drug Policy, several of whom faced similar crises while occupying the highest levels of government in their own countries, share in this position paper their views and recommendations on how to mitigate this epidemic | GCDP, USA

FDA warns companies marketing unproven products, derived from marijuana, that claim to treat or cure cancer

As part of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s ongoing efforts to protect consumers from health fraud, the agency today issued warning letters to four companies illegally selling products online that claim to prevent, diagnose, treat, or cure cancer without evidence to support these outcomes | FDA, USA

New Jersey law raising smoking age to 21 takes effect

The restriction applies to tobacco products and electronic smoking devices. Previously, the age was 19 | The State, USA

#NotHowThatDrugShouldBeUsed: Tweets on nonmedical use of prescription drugs

This week’s STASH reviews surveillance of Twitter traffic by Janani Kalyanam and her colleagues. They searched millions of tweets for references to nonmedical use of prescription drugs | BASIS, USA

A Public Health Guide to Developing a Community Overdose Response Plan

A new publication by CARBC and Island Health aims to give public-health agencies and community organizations the tools they need to develop a community overdose response plan | CARBC, Canada

Canada's first supervised inhalation site for meth, crack cocaine users to open in Lethbridge

A facility in Lethbridge will become North America’s first supervised inhalation site when it opens early next year amid a drug death epidemic that has devastated families across the province | National Post, Canada

First-time drink drivers to lose licence, get interlock device under tough new laws

First-time drink driving offenders could have their licenses cancelled on the spot and interlock devices installed in their cars under tough new laws proposed | Age, Australia

E-cigarette ban in smoke-free areas of NSW attracts Government support

Calls to outlaw electronic cigarettes in smoke-free areas of New South Wales, as has already been done in five other states, are now backed by the state's Health Minister | abc.net, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

What is the message in Doctor Foster’s bottle?

Alcohol is routinely represented in advertising as a fun and pleasurable product that enables sociability and relaxation. Recent complaints about the portrayal of drinking in the BBC drama Doctor Foster can be interpreted as inadvertently reinforcing this message | British Sociological Association blog, UK

Anna Lembke: The opioid epidemic is a symptom of our faltering healthcare system

An infusion of money to “fight the epidemic” is going to have little impact | BMJ opinion, UK

More Corporations Behaving Badly: An Opioid Scandal

On Thursday October 6, 2017, billionaire founder, John Kapoor, CEO of Insys Therapeutics Inc was arrested on charges which allege that his pharmaceutical company had “bribed doctors to prescribe a fentanyl-based cancer pain drug” manufactured by Insys | Psychology Today blog, USA