Daily news - 2nd July 2021

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UK news

Smoking, Drinking & Drug Use Among Young People - 2021 Consultation Questions

NHS Digital are consulting widely on the survey content, including content to keep, remove or change, plus any requirements for new content. The online consultation will be open until 16 July 2021. NHS Digital would really like to hear from you to help inform the future of the survey. You can find out more about the survey at Smoking, drinking and drug use among young people in England - NHS Digital | NHS Digital, UK

National survey reports a surge in alcohol and gambling problems during the pandemic

The Forward Trust has today published the results of a national poll conducted by YouGov that shows increasing levels of problem drinking, gambling and relapse a year into the pandemic | Forward Trust, UK

Deaths from novel psychoactive substances in England, Wales and Northern Ireland: Evaluating the impact of the UK psychoactive substances act 2016

Whilst many of these substances were controlled under the 1971 Misuse of Drugs Act, novel compounds and new variants of controlled compounds were continuously being introduced to the recreational drug market. The Psychoactive Substances Act was therefore implemented in 2016 as a blanket ban on all novel psychoactive substances (NPS). This study evaluates the impact of the Act on deaths following NPS use in England, Wales and Northern Ireland | Journal of Psychopharmacology, UK

Drug Deaths Taskforce - Interim report

The Drug Deaths Taskforce has published its Interim Report detailing the work and further progress of the Taskforce following the One Year Report published in July 2020. Summarising its work in terms of innovation projects, research projects, and interventions through ADP direct funding under the categories of Emergency Response, Reducing Risk and Reducing Vulnerability, the Report offers an appraisal of how and when these will impact | Scottish Drug Deaths Taskforce, UK

Parents with drug and alcohol problems: how can we provide the best interventions? - video

Public Health England has recently published the new guidance ‘Parents with drug and alcohol problems: guidance for adult treatment and children and family services’. This webinar will explore how to implement the guidance and how services can improve to meet the needs of parents, children and families | Addiction Professionals and Adfam, UK

Autistic individuals may be more likely to use recreational drugs to self-medicate their mental health

While autistic individuals are less likely to use substances, those who do so are more likely to self-medicate for their mental health symptoms, according to new research | University of Cambriddge, UK

A pilot study assessing the brain gauge as an indicator of cognitive recovery in alcohol dependence

[Open access] Alcohol dependence is associated with multiple cognitive deficits, which can affect treatment outcomes. Current measures of tracking brain recovery (e.g., functional magnetic resonance imaging) can be less accessible for practitioners. This study pilots a novel device (the brain gauge; BG) to assess its utility, and track recovery of cognitive function in residential alcohol treatment | Human Psychopharmacology, UK

Understanding Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) What Educators need to know (PDF)

This resource provides appropriate strategies and interventions for FASD and is also applicable for use with children and young people who are not yet diagnosed with FASD, but who share some of the same learning needs | NHSAAA, UK

Labour MP shares addiction struggles in Commons Pride debate

‘Be proud of who you are,’ Dan Carden urges young people as he recalls trauma of hiding his sexuality | Guardian, UK

NHS plans could see pregnant women handed £400 vouchers to stop smoking

Research suggests that for every 1,000 pregnant women offered vouchers, 177 would stop smoking | Chronicle, UK

Hartlepool: The converted van helping drug users exchange needles

Used needles are being returned in volumes "well above the national average" at a mobile exchange service in Hartlepool, the organisers have said | BBC, UK

NDTMS: geographical information

Updated - Added updated version of the CDS-P document. Geographic information and the relevant codes to input into the national drug treatment monitoring system (NDTMS) | PHE, UK

Drug and Alcohol Education Conference June 2021

On the 28th June The Alcohol Education Trust and The DSM Foundation co-hosted the third Alcohol and Drug Education Conference. Speakers included Kirsty Blenkins, Young People, Alcohol, Drugs, Tobacco and Justice Division, Public Health England. Dr David Regis, Co-Director of The School Health Education Unit Roary Pownell, HMI Curriculum Unit Subject Lead PSHE, RSHE and Citizenship, OFSTED | Alcohol Education Trust and The DSM Foundation, UK

What does it mean to adopt a rights-based approach to drugs?

The Scottish government has published new ‘rights-based’ treatment standards for people who use drugs. Natalie Davies considers what it means to prioritise people’s rights, and whether this is compatible with an evidence-based approach to addressing substance use problems | SSA, UK

Episode Two - Bereavement Counselling Myths - podcast

Martha, Gill and Margaret talk about different styles of counselling, what to expect from bereavement counselling, and a bit about the Scottish Families National Bereavement Group and service | SFAD, UK

Alcohol Alert – June 2021

Latest roundup of stories on alcohol | IAS, UK

Bristol Recovery Orchestra presents free three day workshop: Reconnect Recharge Recover

BDP is excited to host 3 days of FREE summer music workshops for anyone affected by drug and alcohol problems who can play an acoustic instrument to beginners standard | BDP, UK

E-scooter rider charged with drink-driving at twice the legal limit after passenger is injured

E-scooter users warned to avoid drinking and to refrain from carrying passengers | Independent, UK


International news

These Are the Code Words Used by Top-Level Drug Traffickers

Last summer, hundreds of arrests were made across Europe after police infiltrated Encrochat, an encrypted phone company authorities said was used exclusively by the continent’s criminals and drug traffickers | VICE, UK

Drugs (Counter Mapping): Call for Proposals

This book will share alternative knowledge about drugs, from production to consumption. Experimenting with new visualisations and new graphic languages, it will foster other imaginations and understandings of this global phenomenon. Compiling case studies in text and graphic form, it promotes a better understanding of the complexity behind the word, “drugs” | Drugs Counter Mapping, France

An adapted alcohol screening test will help to fight health harms in the Russian Federation and beyond

WHO/Europe has presented a new package of Russian- and English-language materials to help primary health-care workers in many countries of the eastern part of the WHO European Region to identify patients with risky drinking behaviours. The materials will allow health professionals to support people who might experience harm from drinking or be at risk without even knowing it | WHO, Denmark

Tobacco taxation – a win for public health, a win for revenue and a win for the economy overall

A new tobacco tax manual recently released by WHO, confirms that the most cost-effective, mechanism for reducing tobacco consumption is a significant increase in excise taxes that leads to price increases. Although this evidence on the effectiveness of tobacco taxation is irrefutable, it remained the least implemented of the MPOWER measures | WHO, Denmark

A CDC Investigation Says West Virginia Needs Needle Exchanges — Which The State Outlawed — To Stop Its HIV Outbreak

A CDC investigation obtained by BuzzFeed News shows “low-barrier” needle exchanges are needed to stop an HIV outbreak in West Virginia. “There's a lot of suffering documented in this,” one expert said | Buzzfeed, USA

Nightlife Is Reopening, But the Drugs Have Changed—And So Have We

“All of my friends in the scene have been going back out a lot,” said Alex*, a regular on Manhattan’s Lower East Side club circuit. “Even the ones who didn’t do much partying or party drugs [before] the pandemic.” | Filter Magazine, USA

Massachusetts Cannabis Workers Unionize, Part of a National Movement

Cannabis cultivation workers at Cresco Labs in Massachusetts have successfully negotiated their first union contract. The agreement is the latest in a series of organizing actions by cannabis workers across the country, including recently secured workplace contracts in Illinois, Pennsylvania and California | Filter Magazine, USA

Washington, DC Council Votes to Ban Flavored Vaping Products

On June 29, the Washington, DC Council voted to ban the sale of flavored tobacco products—a designation that includes vapes as well as menthol cigarettes. The legislation now heads to the desk of DC Mayor Muriel Bowser, who has signaled her support for the ban and will likely sign it into law | Filter Magazine, USA

Survey On Driving After Alcohol, Cannabis Or Illicit Drug Use Reveals Disturbing Rates, Excuses, Misperceptions

Many Canadians who consume alcohol, cannabis, or an illicit drug drive knowing they are impaired by the substance, and frequently have passengers with them, according to MADD Canada’s first National Survey On Driving After Alcohol, Cannabis, Or Illicit Drug Use | MADD, Canada

Latest wastewater report builds on drug consumption data

The Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC) today released the thirteenth report of its National Wastewater Drug Monitoring Program (the Program). For the first time the report includes ketamine excretion levels | ACIC, Australia

Drug use monitoring in Australia: Drug use among police detainees, 2020 (PDF)

In 2020, almost half of the detainees reported using cannabis (47%) and methamphetamine (45%) in the past 30 days. Fewer detainees reported using benzodiazepines (21%), cocaine (8%), heroin (7%) or ecstasy (5%) in the past month. In the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, the availability and quality of methamphetamine and heroin declined | Australian Government AIC, Australia

Advertising nicotine e-cigarettes and liquid nicotine to the Australian public

Pharmacies supplying nicotine e-cigarettes or liquid nicotine on prescription may, in specified circumstances, advise the public that they hold stock of these products | Australian Government TGA, Australia

WA police to carry overdose treatment drug Naloxone

About 300 West Australian police will become the first in the country to be deployed with Naloxone, a drug used to provide emergency first aid to people suffering from an opioid overdose | Perth Now, Australia

Same day alcohol delivery regulations tightened

Strong new liquor laws will be phased in from today to help protect against alcohol-related harm surrounding online alcohol sales to minors and people who are intoxicated | Mirage, Australia

More than $100,000 to be spent on new safety measures at school next to drug room

The Victorian government is splashing more than $100,000 on additional safety measures at the primary school next to the North Richmond supervised drug injecting facility | 3AW, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Dan Carden MP: Like so many in the Recovery community, I am happy, healthy and love my life

In an emotional debate in Parliament to mark Pride Month, Dan Carden, the MP for Liverpool Walton, opened up for the first time about his struggles with alcohol addiction. This blog is a version of the speech he shared with MPs in the hope that by being open about his own struggles, he could challenge the stigma that stops so many people asking for help | AHA blog, UK