Daily news - 11th June 2021

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UK news

Addiction treatment harder to get since councils took over, says Tory MP

Shift of responsibility from NHS has led to ‘serious shortcomings’ in service in England, ex-health minister finds | Guardian, UK

Price distribution of off-trade alcohol changes in Scotland, following implementation on MUP

The implementation of Minimum Unit Pricing (MUP) in Scotland on 1 May 2018 set a floor price for alcohol based on strength. Today Public Health Scotland published an analysis of alcohol price distribution data, which finds that the introduction of MUP was associated with changes in the volume of off-trade alcohol sold at different price bands in Scotland, compared to both England & Wales (where MUP did not apply in the timeframe considered) and Scotland before MUP | Public Health Scotland, UK

Ask The Family: Family Perspectives On Whole Family Support and Family Inclusive Practice

The national Whole Family Approach/ Family Inclusive Practice Working Group was established in 2020, with the support of the Scottish Government, to review current practice in relation to families affected by alcohol and drug use. Over the past year, the Working Group has carried out a process of information-gathering, sharing learning, and hearing from external experts (including families with lived experience and organisations working with families) | SFAD, UK

Naloxone Training

BDP at Brunswick Court, Brunswick Square, Saint Paul's BS2 8PE. BDP are very happy to present a brand new Naloxone training session available for FREE for anyone who needs it. These sessions will tool you up with everything you need to know to potentially save a life in an overdose situation | BDP, UK

Contaminated Cannabis Recall

Eaststone Ltd, the importer and distributor of two cannabis flower based products, has issued a recall on two of their batches which may be contaminated with mould. Eaststone Ltd have now issued a company led recall of these products | Centre for Medicinal Cannabis, UK


International news

Alcohol consumption during the COVID-19 pandemic in Europe: a large-scale cross-sectional study in 21 countries

To investigate changes in alcohol consumption during the first months of the COVID-19 pandemic in Europe as well as its associations with income and experiences of distress related to the pandemic | Addiction, UK

Statement: Drug use and drug dependency itself is not a mental health condition

Ongoing discussions, including among key international donors, have raised concerns within Harm Reduction International and the International Network of People who Use Drugs (INPUD) about the proposed inclusion of mental health within the harm reduction package and more generally about conflating drug use and mental health. This paper aims to stimulate and clarify the discussion around this | HRI, UK

Spotlight on the psychedelic experience

This latest instalment of the Science Explained series examines the link between the acute psychedelic experience and longer-term changes | Beckley PsycTech, UK

Emma Coronel Aispuro: Wife of El Chapo pleads guilty to drugs charge

The wife of infamous Mexican drug lord Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán has pleaded guilty to a range of charges including conspiracy to distribute illegal drugs | BBC, UK

Aram Sheibani: International drugs boss with luxury lifestyle jailed

A man who was the "very head" of a large-scale international drugs conspiracy with links to Colombia has been jailed | BBC, UK

Alcohol treatment services: a snapshot survey 2021 (PDF)

Ireland has high levels of alcohol use and not surprisingly there are correspondingly high numbers of people who have problems with alcohol and who might need professional help. Treatment services for alcohol exist on a continuum and range from brief interventions, to community addiction services, detox facilities and residential rehabilitation | Alcohol Action Ireland, Ireland

Guinness announces launch of Guinness 0.0, “the Guinness with everything, except alcohol”

Guinness has announced the Irish launch of a new alcohol-free version of the famous drink, which will be called Guinness 0.0 | JOE, Ireland

Quality Standards for Civil Society Involvement in Drug Policy

In this report, the EU Civil Society Forum on Drugs will provide you with guidelines on how to make the involvement of civil society in drug policy more meaningful | Drug Reporter, Hungary

Identifying counties at risk of high overdose mortality burden during the emerging fentanyl epidemic in the USA: a predictive statistical modelling study

The emergence of fentanyl around 2013 represented a new, deadly stage of the opioid epidemic in the USA. We aimed to develop a statistical regression approach to identify counties at the highest risk of high overdose mortality in the subsequent years by predicting annual county-level overdose death rates across the contiguous USA and to validate our approach against observed overdose mortality data collected between 2013 and 2018 | Lancet, USA

Model to predict drug overdose deaths in US

For two decades, the number of Americans who die each year from drug overdoses has steadily risen, from less than 20,000 in 1999 to more than 80,000 in 2020 | Medical Xpress, USA

Beyond Remission: From Alcohol Dependence to Optimal Mental Health

New study of Canadians with a history of alcohol dependence found 71% were no longer dependent, 52% were free of any addictions or mental illness, and 38% were in optimal mental health with high levels of happiness and well-being | EurekAlert, USA

N.Y.C. Mayoral Candidates Debate Marijuana Laws - video

New York City mayoral candidates offered differing approaches to regulating marijuana in the city, following its recent statewide legalization | NYTimes, USA

Why a Menthol Cigarette Ban Cannot Be the Answer

It’s Been A Long Time Coming…A Long Time Coming…But I Know A Change is Gonna Come…Oh Yes It Will! The email from the African American Tobacco Control Leadership Council (AATCLC ) was jubilant, invoking the Civil Rights era with the iconic lyrics of the Sam Cooke song | Filter Magazine, USA

Alberta Government’s New Rules Set SCS Up to Fail, Advocates Say 

More roadblocks loom for Alberta’s safe consumption sites, as the provincial government sets new regulations for the facilities’ operations | Filter Magazine, USA

Massive Perth heroin bust nets 77 kilograms hidden in crates disguised as industrial equipment

Australian Border Force has intercepted 77 kilograms of heroin concealed in air cargo crates bound for an address in the southern Perth suburb of Bibra Lake | abc.net.au, Australia

'Recovery is the hardest thing, but worthwhile.' How Lea-Anne supported her husband through ice addiction

Six years ago, on an otherwise ordinary Friday night, Lea-Anne walked into her laundry to a scene not even her worst nightmare could conjure | Mama Mia, Australia


Blogs, comment and opinion

Why are the disadvantaged at greater risk of alcohol harm despite often drinking less than the advantaged?

The alcohol harm paradox is the consistent research finding that the disadvantaged suffer greater rates of alcohol-related hospitalisations and deaths, even though they often consume less alcohol than the more advantaged | IAS blog, UK

What is drug checking?

Want to know more about drug checking? Our friends from Energy Control in Spain, Jellinek in the Netherlands and The Loop in the UK have shared their insights into running drug checking services. We’ve put together this blog to share their experiences and how Scotland can learn from them | CREW blog, UK

Once unthinkable, a ‘smoke-free’ Britain may soon be a reality

With even tobacco addicts no longer believing that the government is being too draconian, change is in the air | Guardian opinion, UK

Reforming the Mental Health Act: reflections from the network

In April this year, government consulted on potential reforms to the Act, including some positive recommendations for changing the law and practices on mental health inpatient treatment; the importance of choice and autonomy; and ensuring patients are treated as individuals | MEAM, UK

The US’s emergency response to covid-19 provides a roadmap for the opioid overdose crisis

Covid-19 offers practical lessons that we can apply to the US’s approach to the overdose crisis, writes Joshua Barocas | BMJ opinion, UK

Recovery Advocacy Update: Scotland

July 2019, Sunday 11.30 pm the phone rings, its Natalie Mclean. I had met Natalie briefly at the Ace aware nation event in Glasgow where the much-loved & inspiring Gabor Mate was presenting later that day. The air was filled with excitement & the possibility & chat of paradigm change... | William L White Papers, USA

Ending of a Needle Exchange Program Shows How Government is Addicted to Failure

In 2015 Scott County, Indiana made headlines for all the wrong reasons. With a population of fewer than 10,000 people, the county was the center of an HIV outbreak of more than 230 cases. Most of those infected were individuals who engaged in intravenous drug use | Independent Institute blog, USA