Reports: July

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The 2019–20 Irish National Drug and Alcohol Survey: main findings (PDF)

The National Drug and Alcohol Survey (NDAS) collects information on alcohol and tobacco consumption and drug use among the general population in Ireland. It also surveys people’s attitudes and perceptions relating to tobacco, alcohol, and other drug use and records the impact of drug use on people’s communities. The 2019–20 NDAS collected information from 5,762 people aged 15 years and older across Ireland | HRB, Ireland

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

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

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

Treatment, prevention and harm reduction interventions for different forms of ATS (Amphetamine Type Stimulants) use (PDF)

This policy brief aims at contributing to the reduction of the harms of ATS use by describing different trajectories of ATS use and offering a set of evidence-based interventions for different groups of ATS users | Correlation Network, The Netherlands

Smoking attributable deaths in England: When the information changes

We have published new estimates, based on an updated methodology, on the deaths and hospital admissions caused by smoking. The figures are around 15% lower than previously published but what does this tell us about smoking in England? | PHE, UK

Local Alcohol Profiles for England (LAPE): July 2021 update

Update of indicators in the Local Alcohol Profiles for England (LAPE) interactive tool | PHE, UK

Statistics on Women's Smoking Status at Time of Delivery: England Quarter 4, 2020-21

9.5% of women were smokers at time of delivery in 2020-21. 0.9 percentage point decrease from 2019-20 (10.4%), but still above the current national ambition of 6% or less | NHS Digital, UK

Australia's youth

[Includes section on drug use] From 2001 to 2019, single occasion risky drinking at least once a month decreased substantially among young people aged 14–24 (from 47% to 30%). The proportion of young people aged 14–24 who smoke daily has more than halved since 2001 (19.3% to 6.8% in 2019). From 2001 to 2019, there was a reduction in the recent illicit use of drugs (including non-medical use of pharmaceuticals) among young people aged 14–24 (from 32% to 24%) | AIHW, Australia

LGB people 'more likely to have mental health issues'

They are also more likely to drink heavily and smoke. The analysis was conducted by the National Centre for Social Research (NatCen) for NHS Digital, based on a representative sample of over-16s who took part in the Health Survey for England between 2011 and 2018 | BBC, UK

Merseyside Violence Reduction Partnership 2020-21: Whole System Evaluation Report

Merseyside is one of the 18 areas allocated funding in 2019 by the UK Government to establish a Violence Reduction Unit. To inform the continued development of the Merseyside Violence Reduction Partnership (VRP) ...the Merseyside Academics’ Violence Prevention Partnership were commissioned to evaluate the VRP as a whole, and selected work programmes | University of Liverpool et al, UK

CAMH releases updated national clinical guidelines for treatment of opioid use disorder

The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), in collaboration with subject matter experts and medical regulatory authorities across Canada, have released updated national clinical guidelines for the treatment of opioid use disorder. Opioid Agonist Therapy: A Synthesis of Canadian Guidelines for Treating Opioid Use Disorder, harmonizes existing provincial and national guidelines, evidence-based practices, and expert opinions into one document aimed at providing consistent and high-quality care to people with opioid use disorder | CAMH, Canada

Review of drugs part two: prevention, treatment, and recovery

This is Part 2 of my independent review for government, setting out a way forward on drug treatment and recovery. Part 1 laid bare the extent of the illicit drugs market in the UK, worth almost £10 billion a year, with 3 million users and a supply chain that has become increasingly violent and exploitative. This is explored further in Part 2, which concludes that the public provision we currently have for prevention, treatment and recovery is not fit for purpose, and urgently needs repair | DHSC, UK

Improving drug treatment services in England: Models for commissioning and accountability (PDF)

This report was commissioned to inform Dame Carol Black’s independent review of drugs. It reviews models of commissioning, funding and accountability in order to provide insight for Dame Carol’s recommendations on the future of substance misuse services in England | University of York, UK

National Drug Treatment Reporting System 2014 – 2020 alcohol treatment data (PDF)

In this seven-year period, 51,205 cases were treated for alcohol as a main problem. The number of cases treated decreased from 7,546 in 2019 to 5,824 in 2020, a drop of 22.8%. The proportion of new cases decreased from 48.6% in 2014 to 42.8% in 2020 | Health Research Board, Ireland

New report on alcohol consumption on municipal properties

While a beer at the beach may sound like a nice idea for some, allowing drinking in these spaces may change their atmosphere and be bad for public health in the long run. Researchers at UVic’s Canadian Institute for Substance Use Research have created Not Just a Walk in the Park: Unsupervised Alcohol Consumption on Municipal Properties in BC, an evidence-based, public-health-oriented guide for municipalities as they consider allowing drinking in public outdoor spaces | UVIC, Canada

Provisional Drug Overdose Death Counts

This data visualization presents provisional counts for drug overdose deaths based on a current flow of mortality data in the National Vital Statistics System. Counts for the most recent final annual data are provided for comparison | CDC, USA

Alcohol consumption and harm during the COVID-19 pandemic

A report collating data on alcohol consumption and alcohol-related harm in England during the COVID-19 pandemic and comparing it to data from previous years | PHE, UK

Alcohol and other drug treatment services in Australia annual report

In 2019–20, around 139,300 clients aged 10 and over received AOD treatment. The four most common drugs that led clients to seek treatment were alcohol (34%), amphetamines (28%), cannabis (18%) and heroin (5.1%). The median age of clients was 35 years | AIHW, Australia

Heroin-Assisted Treatment and the United Nations international drug control apparatus (PDF)

There is now a powerful evidence base for heroin-assisted treatment (HAT). In view of the present epidemic of drug-related mortality, the treatment should have a more significant role in public health policy | GDPO, UK

Differences in Cannabis Perceptions among Canadian Adolescent Boys and Girls [report]

Examines how gender differences in cannabis perceptions and behaviours can increase the risk of cannabis-related harm among adolescent boys and girls. It also outlines how adults can provide support. Anyone working with youth, including educators, counsellors and public health professionals, will find this report helpful. Key findings are highlighted in the infographic | CCSA, Canada

Alcohol and other drug treatment services in Australia annual report

In 2019–20, cannabis was reported as a drug of concern in one-third (33%) of all closed treatment episodes, either as a principal or additional drug of concern | AIHW, Australia

Overdose Prevention During a Pandemic

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to present new challenges, historic, and systemic oppressors experienced by PWUD have only become more exacerbated. PWUD were already experiencing a lack of resources, lack of funding, and neglect by the health care system. In the context of a global pandemic, these inequities have driven up risk for PWUD, and it is paramount that we capture this experience to prevent history from repeating itself | Canadian Association of People who Use Drugs, Canada

Declines in methamphetamine supply and demand in Australia during the COVID-19 pandemic (PDF)

This study uses data from the Drug Use Monitoring in Australia program to examine the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the methamphetamine market in Australia. Since the pandemic began, the availability and quality of methamphetamine have decreased, prices have increased (from $17.50–$50 per point to $50–$250 per point) and consumption has declined | Australian Institute of Criminology, Australia

Mental health services in Australia

Mental health services in Australia (MHSA) provides a picture of the national response of the health and welfare service system to the mental health care needs of Australians. MHSA is updated progressively throughout each year as data becomes available | AIHW, Australia

Alcohol Action Ireland annual review 2020 (PDF)

2020 has been a year like no other in the lifetime of Alcohol Action Ireland. The Covid-19 pandemic has dominated every aspect of the work of the organisation including the executive working completely remotely since March and all events moving online. However, despite this AAI has continued to meet and exceed all its targets for the year | Alcohol Action Ireland, Ireland

Knowledge & Library Services (KLS) Evidence Briefing: What are the facilitators and barriers to the uptake of low dead space injecting equipment for people who inject drugs? [From June]

This briefing summarises the evidence on the facilitators and barriers to the uptake of low dead space injecting equipment from 1st January 2000 to 31st May 2021 | PHE, UK

Chief Medical Officer’s annual report 2021: health in coastal communities

Chief Medical Officer Professor Chris Whitty’s second annual report presents an analysis of the health and wellbeing of England’s coastal communities. [Includes information on alcohol and other drug use in rural communities] | Department of Health and Social Care, UK

Policy paper

Government response to the independent review of drugs by Dame Carol Black

Details the government's response to parts 1 and 2 of Dame Carol Black's independent review of drugs | Department of Health and Social Care and Home Office, UK

WHO reports progress in the fight against tobacco epidemic

Many countries are making progress in the fight against tobacco, but a new World Health Organization report shows some are not addressing emerging nicotine and tobacco products and failing to regulate them | WHO, Switzerland

EMCDDA launches new resources to help European countries beat viral hepatitis

On World Hepatitis Day, the EU drugs agency launched a new set of resources to help European countries meet health targets to eliminate viral hepatitis. The resources, presented in an online toolkit, are part of a wider EMCDDA harm-reduction initiative supporting countries in their efforts to prevent and control infectious diseases among people who inject drugs | EMCDDA, Portugal

People who inject drugs appreciated the efforts made by drug services to continue to provide support during the pandemic, the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) funded LUCID-B study published (pre-proof) in the International Journal of Drug Policy has found. But for many, the pandemic worsened already precarious and isolated lives | NIHR, UK

Must Know: Treatment and recovery for people with drug or alcohol problems

As elected members, you are ideally placed to champion investment into reducing drug and alcohol harm in your local area, engaging the local community and collaborating with officers. The purpose of this guide, developed in partnership with Public Health England (PHE), is to raise awareness about drug and alcohol related harms and empower councillors by providing an introduction to treatment and recovery services, key considerations, signposting to useful resources, as well as any questions you need to ask to support effective decision making | LGA, UK

People who inject drugs: HIV and viral hepatitis monitoring

Updated with 2011 to 2020 data and Health Protection Report 15(13) | PHE, UK

Drug-related Deaths in Scotland in 2020

Statistics of drug-related deaths in 2020 and earlier years, broken down by age, sex, substances implicated in the death, underlying cause of death, and NHS Board and Council areas | National Records of Scotland, UK