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Weekly news - 8th October 2021

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In date order, Monday to Friday

New era of public health to tackle inequalities and level up the UK

The Office for Health Improvement and Disparities launches today putting prevention at the heart to help people live longer, healthier and happier lives |
Department of Health and Social Care and Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, UK

Quit smoking this Stoptober

Stop smoking this Stoptober and start doing so much more | NHS, UK

Go Sober For October 2021 - Banish The Booze This October

Sober October encourages people to go booze-free in October to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support... | Macmillan Cancer Support, UK

Cannabis users at 'much higher' risk of developing poor mental health

Those with a recorded history of cannabis use in general practice records are at a much higher risk of developing mental ill health problems such as anxiety or depression as well as severe mental illnesses, new research shows | University of Birmingham, UK

DDN October 2021 - Out now

This issue we’re stepping inside the criminal justice system to ask ‘How are you coping?’ (p6), ‘Do you think this is working?’ (p8), ‘Should you be here at all?’ (p14). The voices speak clearly from every page. We offer valuable coping mechanisms for looking after mental health (p20) and a highly motivating demonstration of co- production (p18), as well as an extremely useful breakdown of the costs of rehab – which the author fed into Dame Carol Black’s review – to help us to assess its value (p16) | DDN, UK

'Think twice' campaign could reduce risk of UK opioid epidemic

A campaign that urged GPs to 'think-twice' before putting a patient on opioid medicines is effective in reducing opioid prescribing in primary care, according to the findings of a major study | Medical Xpress, UK

Fatal opioid overdoses during and shortly after hospital admissions in England: A case-crossover study

[Open access] Hospital patients who use illicit opioids such as heroin may use drugs during an admission or leave the hospital in order to use drugs. There have been reports of patients found dead from drug poisoning on the hospital premises or shortly after leaving the hospital. This study examines whether hospital admission and discharge are associated with increased risk of opioid-related death | PLOS Medicine, UK

Injecting equipment provision in Scotland

This release by Public Health Scotland presents information on the provision of injecting equipment. This includes the number of outlets, attendances and the types of injecting equipment distributed to people who inject illicit drugs (including Novel Psychoactive Substances and Image and Performance Enhancing Drugs) in Scotland in 2020/21 | Public Health Scotland, UK

Research claiming light alcohol consumption is harmful, is flawed, says new study

‘One need not feel that the only safe alcohol intake is zero’, the study author claims | Independent, UK

Conservative Party Conference 2021: Time to Reflect on Drug Related Deaths in England and Wales

As the Conservative Party Conference comes to a close it’s an important time to reflect on the unprecedented number of lives lost to preventable drug related deaths in England and Wales last year | Volteface, UK

Naloxone access doesn’t make heroin seem less risky

The medication naloxone is so effective at saving the lives of opioid overdose victims that some people worry that it might make drug users think heroin and related drugs are no longer risky. But a new study suggests that is not the case | EurekAlert, USA

Fund to help end cycle of homelessness and hospital readmissions

People experiencing homelessness in England to be supported through pilot projects, backed by £16 million, to provide temporary accommodation, care and support. This will include on-site appointment services, counselling and drug and alcohol support | DHSC, UK

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

Update of indicators in the Local Alcohol Profiles for England (LAPE) interactive tool | Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, UK

UK universities have their heads in the sand on student addiction

Isolation and shame pose big risks to recovery from addiction problems, yet on-campus support programmes are rare in the UK, say Suzi Gage and Shahroo Izadi | Times Higher Education, UK

Scotland's drug death crisis: Nicola Sturgeon keeping an 'open-mind' on whether to support Tory recovery plans

Scottish Conservative leader warns 'longer we fail to act, the more lives will be lost' but the First Minister stresses that she wants to see more details of recovery plan | GB News, UK

Holyrood sets up group to promote medicinal cannabis

The parliament’s Standards Committee this morning approved an application to establish the group from Glasgow Labour MSP Pauline McNeill | Herald, UK