Daily news - 27th September 2017

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UK news

'The trouble with GHB that you buy in a bottle you can't be guaranteed what it say on the label is in the bottle,' Harry Shapiro, director at DrugWise says. 'For a naive person who drops some in a drink, you have no idea your dosage level.' | The Debrief, UK

Mapping the maze

What support is available for women facing multiple disadvantage across England and Wales? Mapping the Maze aims to identify what and where services exist for women experiencing homelessness, substance misuse, poor mental health, offending and complex needs | Agenda and AVA, UK

Rail bosses to 'look again' at needle exchange closure

ScotRail Alliance is to reconsider the decision to close Scotland's largest needle exchange, located in Glasgow Central Station | BBC, UK

Wrexham drug detox bed wait 'hugely damaging'

People seeking help for drug and alcohol addiction in north Wales are facing a five month wait, Plaid Cymru has said | BBC, UK

Royal College Of General Practitioners. Draft Council Paper – Cannabis For Specified Medical Indications

This is the document approved by the RCGP Council on the on 22nd September 2017 | Clear, UK

Mind the Gap: sleep and opioids

Dr Kirstie Anderson from the Regional Sleep Service, Newcastle writes for us on the often-overlooked problems with sleep, and patients on opioids | SMMGP, UK

Sporty people likely to drink more alcohol, survey finds

People in Wales who exercise regularly are more likely to drink above the recommended alcohol allowance than those who do no sport, a survey has found. The National Survey for Wales found 58% of people who exercise three times or more a week drink within the limit | BBC, UK

Liver disease & health inequalities: new data, old approach?

Public Health England (PHE) have announced updated figures on liver disease, with various media reporting on the wide regional variation seen. However those who have been calling for further action to address the burden of liver disease may feel significant changes are yet required to affect real change | Alcohol Policy UK, UK

Personalised digital interventions for reducing hazardous and harmful alcohol consumption in community-dwelling populations

A proven strategy for reducing excessive alcohol consumption levels is to offer a brief conversation-based intervention in primary care settings, but more recent technological innovations have enabled people to interact directly via computer, mobile device or smartphone with digital interventions designed to address problem alcohol consumption | Cochrane Drugs and Alcohol Group, UK

Reading University introduces self-serve 16-tap ‘beer wall’

In a move that could speed the decline of the humble bar tender, Reading University has introduced a self-serve 16-tap "beer wall" at its onsite student union, allowing students to pull their own pints and buy beverages with a single tap of their debit or credit card | Telegraph, UK

How wine on tap could change how we drink

Traditionalists who eye screwtop bottles suspiciously better brace themselves, because wine on tap is set to change the way we drink | Independent, UK

The best low-alcohol beers: craft brewers cut out the booze and boost the flavour 

Traffic cones can sleep more easily at night because “booze Britain” is not as drinking as much as it used to | Telegraph, UK

'Loophole laywer' who specialises in driving offences escapes jail after telling judge her daughter is a victim of cyber bullying

A lawyer who specialises in defending "loophole-style" motoring cases has escaped jail for drink driving after she told the court her daughter was a victim of cyber bullying | Telegraph, UK

Plans for medicinal cannabis in Jersey 'by the end of the year'

Jersey's Health Minister says he hopes medicinal cannabis will be available in the island by the end of the year | ITV, UK


International news

Interventions for reducing hepatitis C infection in people who inject drugs

The first global review to quantify the impact of needle syringe programmes (NSP) and opioid substitution treatment (OST) in reducing the risk of becoming infected with the hepatitis C virus is published in Cochrane Library Drug and Alcohol Review Group and the journal Addiction. The study, has implications for millions of people who are 'at risk' from infection | Medical Xpress, UK

Overcoming addiction with sailing: 'It's a way of life I never knew existed and better than any drug'

Coolmine clients who are currently recovering from addictions have sailed this week as part of a Voyage of Recovery programme | Journal, Ireland

Trump Extends Cannabis Protections 'Til December As Plans For Study, States Remain Hazy

In his temporary budget-dealing with Democrats, President Trump has agreed to continue a ban on using federal funds to interfere in states' legal cannabis practices, but as 2018 nears, a government stance is largely still up in the air | Forbes, USA

Portland State study links cancerous toxins to cannabis extract

Researchers at Portland State University found benzene and other potentially cancer-causing chemicals in the vapor produced by butane hash oil, a cannabis extract | EurekAlert, USA

Drug induced deaths at highest rate since late 90s

Australia recorded the highest number of drug-induced deaths since the late 1990s, with the death rate steadily increasing over a decade and now at 7.5 deaths per 100,000 Australians - data released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) shows | ABS, Australia

Australian drug induced deaths at highest rate since late 1990s

Australia has recorded its highest number of drug-related deaths since the late 1990s, driven by the meth epidemic, but also the misuse of prescription medicines | News.com.au, Australia

The great meth testing scam

Are Kiwis wasting thousands unnecessarily decontaminating their homes? Maria Slade looks into a business growth story which appears to be solving a problem which doesn't exist | Spinoff, New Zealand


Blogs, comment and opinion

Digital technology in substance misuse recovery

Increasingly, people are accessing support for their substance misuse recovery via the internet. This online support includes information resources, online treatment programmes, recovery maintenance support, and harm reduction advice | Russell Webster, UK

Suicide, Alcohol- and Drug-related Death: Scottish Stories of Place-based Disadvantage and Male Vulnerability

In the latest of our series of blogs on place-based inequality, Dr Jon Minton discusses evidence from a recent study of risk and vulnerability to death in Scotland | What Workd Scotland, UK

Remembering Those We’ve Lost: the Museum of Drug Policy

Release has been providing free and confidential specialist advice to the public and campaigning for the reform of drug policy for 50 years. To mark half a century of our work, we will be hosting the Museum of Drug Policy in London in November. As part of this event, we are creating an exhibit to honour those who have died due to a drug overdose | Release Blog, UK

For My Daughter: Debating Prince William’s Call to Discuss Legalisation

On Sunday morning I cycled to my local BBC Studio near to where I live in Oxford to take part in a BBC discussion as a result of the fact that Prince William asked the BIG question this week – should drugs be legalised? | Anyone's Child Blog, UK

Opioid epidemic causing rise in hepatitis C infections and other serious illnesses

Many Americans now know that, over the past decade, opioid addiction and deaths from opioid overdose in the U.S. have skyrocketed | Conversation, USA

Collection Exhibition: “Altered States: Sex, Drugs, and Transcendence” at Harvard’s Houghton Library

The search for something beyond the limits of ordinary experience—for transcendence—has preoccupied humankind for millennia. Religion, the occult, philosophy, music, endorphins, sex, Ecstasy: various paths have been taken in the hope of achieving it | Points Blog, USA