Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
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Review slams 'toxic' culture in Australian swimming team

Review slams 'toxic' culture in Australian swimming team | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A report reviewing the leadership in Australia's swimming team has slammed a "toxic" culture in which swimmers abused prescription drugs, alcohol and curfews during last year's London Olympics.
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ReGenUC's comment, February 18, 2013 7:03 PM
Our swimmers reflect a wider social problem
Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
Topics being covered in the media that are of interest to us
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Drug treatment services in Victoria short changed in federal government’s $300 million action plan

VICTORIAN drug treatment services have received less than $10 million to battle the ice epidemic, more than a year after the federal government launched its $300 million action plan.

ReGenUC's insight:

VAADA's Sam Biondo calls out the the shortfalls in PHN finding ongoing uncertainty of Federal funding for AOD treatment programs. Reportedly, Minister Hunt will announce a funding extension this week. See our piece on the impacts of the lack of long-term service funding on the capacity of treatment providers: http://www.regen.org.au/news-advocacy/regen-in-the-media/588-opinion-drug-treatment-services-need-funding-certainty-09-04-15. It is disappointing to say the least that there have been no significant improvements in this area since we wrote it two years ago. Thanks to VAADA for making the text of this article available.

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GHB, a party drug that's easy to overdose on but was once used in childbirth (Aus)

GHB, a party drug that's easy to overdose on but was once used in childbirth (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
It's easy to overdose on the recreational drug GHB, as recent cases in Melbourne show.
ReGenUC's insight:

Julaine Allan provides a brief history of the drug and its use. See this Stonetree post for some general harm reduction tips: https://stonetreeaus.wordpress.com/2012/11/30/ghbgbl-and-harm-reduction/.

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Revellers, please look after yourselves (NSW)

Revellers, please look after yourselves (NSW) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
AGE is no barrier to injury. It is definitely not just the young who get intoxicated and suffer pain and grief due to excess alcohol.
ReGenUC's insight:

Gordian Fulde's regular summary of the AOD-related presentations at the St Vincents ED in Sydney.

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Police issue warning to Secret Garden festival goers after two overdoses (NSW)

Two drug overdoses and 28 drug detections were made at an electronic music festival south-west of Sydney on Friday.
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Sydney injecting room a success: PM

The prime minister says a supervised drug injecting room on the edge of his Sydney electorate has been a success, days after the Victorian government baulked at opening one in Melbourne.
ReGenUC's insight:

Perhaps the PM could consider funding centres in other cities? The need for MSICs extends well beyond Sydney and Melbourne.

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ReGenUC's curator insight, February 23, 10:37 PM

Perhaps the PM could consider funding centres in other cities.?The need for MSICs extends well beyond Sydney and Melbourne.

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Overdose reversal drug to be subsidised (Vic)

A drug used to reverse the effects of heroin overdose will be subsidised by the Victorian government in a bid to reduce overdose deaths.
ReGenUC's insight:

This was announced last night at the Family Drug Support Day event at Parliament House: https://www.facebook.com/pg/ReGenUC/photos/?tab=album&album_id=968463756618481. That's one of Coroner Hawkins' recommendations acted on. Now for the MSIC!

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New law could force more drug and alcohol addicts into compulsory rehabilitation (NZ)

New law could force more drug and alcohol addicts into compulsory rehabilitation (NZ) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Law change could force more drug addicts into rehab, but will centres be able to cope?
ReGenUC's insight:

One question about this measure is sector capacity to cope with increased demand. The other is the effectiveness of forced treatment. Just what impact this legislation will have will depend largely on the detail of how it is implemented (little of which is available here). FYI, you can see our submission to the 2015 review of Victoria's Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Act here: http://www.regen.org.au/images/stories/Advocacy/2015_NDS_consultation_v2.0.pdf

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'I'm tired of watching people die': Organizer of march to end overdose deaths demands action (Canada)

'I'm tired of watching people die': Organizer of march to end overdose deaths demands action (Canada) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
decriminalize drug possession;
grant immediate exemptions to all organizations that want to run supervised drug injection sites; 
increase funding for harm reduction resources and services;
expand access to what it calls opioid substitution therapy, which involves supplying drug users with a replacement drug as part of treatment for addiction.
ReGenUC's insight:

Marchers ask for more action from political leaders, including:

  • decriminalize drug possession;
  • grant immediate exemptions to all organizations that want to run supervised drug injection sites; 
  • increase funding for harm reduction resources and services;
  • expand access to what it calls opioid substitution therapy, which involves supplying drug users with a replacement drug as part of treatment for addiction.
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It’s About to Get Way Easier to Buy Medicinal Cannabis in Australia

It’s About to Get Way Easier to Buy Medicinal Cannabis in Australia | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
With locally grown weed now staying in the country, and imports legalised, we should have a surplus within eight weeks.
ReGenUC's insight:

Vice's take on the immediate impacts of the changes announced this week by Minister Hunt.

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Supervised injection site could house machine to quickly test for tainted drugs (Canada)

Supervised injection site could house machine to quickly test for tainted drugs (Canada) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Ottawa's first supervised injection site could include a machine that instantly checks street drugs for deadly hidden substances, such as fentanyl. Lynne Leonard, an assistant professor and research scientist at the University of Ottawa, has submitted a research funding proposal to th
ReGenUC's insight:

More evidence of how far ahead of Australia Canada is in harm reduction. See today's related post on the naming of Edmonton's first four safe injecting sites: http://sco.lt/5lvILh

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Ex-correspondent says Reuters will sponsor his rehab after jail release (Indonesia)

Ex-correspondent says Reuters will sponsor his rehab after jail release (Indonesia) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A former war correspondent arrested in Bali for allegedly possessing hashish has revealed his former employer has agreed to pay for his PTSD treatment when he i
ReGenUC's insight:

The story here is not Mr Fox or who is paying for his treatment, but the role trauma plays in contributing to AOD dependence. Self-medication to cope with trauma, mental health and other issues is a common factor for many of the people we work with.

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Fact Check: Is it not practical to conduct on-the-spot drug tests “safely and quickly”? (Aus)

Fact Check: Is it not practical to conduct on-the-spot drug tests “safely and quickly”? (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

The Victorian Police Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton’s recent claim that it’s not practical to conduct on-the-spot drug tests “safely and quickly” is, at best, misinformed. These tests have been taking place successfully in Europe for more than a decade.

ReGenUC's insight:

David Caldicott responds to recent claims in media coverage that onsite drug checking services are not effective in reducing harm. It's the latest post for the AOD Media Watch project.

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PBS listing of hep C drugs leads to 10x uptake (Aus)

PBS listing of hep C drugs leads to 10x uptake (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
More Australians were treated for hep C since DAAs were added to the PBS than in the past decade, according to new report Since direct-actin
ReGenUC's insight:

Highlighting the impact of the PBS listing on public health. See yesterday's related coverage of the Kirby Institute report: http://sco.lt/4vM0yf.

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Ice epidemic not a criminal issue: experts (Aus)

Drug experts are calling for a change of attitude from the Australian government toward the serious health and social issue of ice addiction.
ReGenUC's insight:

Citing a new MJA article by Matthew Frei and Alex Wodak.

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Labor orders police Meth Border Force (WA)

Labor orders police Meth Border Force (WA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A METH Border Force targeting WAs ports and interstate road routes will be established if Labor wins power in a fortnight.
ReGenUC's insight:

WA Labor picks up on Commissioner O'Callaghan's comments last weeks about the challenges of restricting the supply of methamphetamine into WA: http://sco.lt/6su60P

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America’s battle with drugs: Fatal overdoses spike among white, middle-aged men

America’s battle with drugs: Fatal overdoses spike among white, middle-aged men | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Some states are struggling under a worsening heroin and prescription medication epidemic.
ReGenUC's insight:

Insert comment about racial politics and US drug policy here.

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ACT Health warns of dangerous ecstasy-type 'MDMA' party drug being sold in Canberra

ACT Health warns of dangerous ecstasy-type 'MDMA' party drug being sold in Canberra | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A "potentially fatal" party drug is being sold in Canberra in pink and clear capsules, ACT Health has warned.
ReGenUC's insight:

See the ACTINOS Project report here: http://sco.lt/5sATD7 

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Safe injecting room trial wins backing of influential officer Ron Iddles (Vic)

Safe injecting room trial wins backing of influential officer Ron Iddles (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A safe injecting room for heroin users should be trialled in Richmond to help curb drug deaths, the departing head of the Police Association has said.
ReGenUC's insight:

Yet another example of the 'former...' speaking out in support of evidence based drug policy. Here's hoping our current members of Parliament can finally get behind a MSIC when the announced inquiry reports back in September.

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'High income not the cause for WA's drug epidemic': Top cop

'High income not the cause for WA's drug epidemic': Top cop | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
​Western Australia's police commissioner has questioned Premier Colin Barnett's claim that drug use is rife in the state because of high incomes.
ReGenUC's insight:

Good to see Commissioner O'Callaghan refuting this dubious claim by Premier Barnett. See this follow-up coverage: https://thewest.com.au/politics/state-election-2017/colin-barnett-sticking-to-meth-use-caused-by-high-wages-line-ng-b88396270z

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Free drug treatment service opens in Moreton Bay and Pine Rivers (Qld)

Free drug treatment service opens in Moreton Bay and Pine Rivers (Qld) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
OPERATORS of a free drug and alcohol treatment service in Pine Rivers expect 70 per cent of their clients to be methamphetamine users.
ReGenUC's insight:

Good to see some PHN treatment funding starting to increase local service accessibility.

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Many Smokers With Chronic Conditions Take Up E-Cigarettes (USA)

Sick smokers may be vaping to kick the smoking habit
ReGenUC's insight:

2015-15 data shows people with conditions like COPD, asthma & cardiovascular disease (but not cancer) are more likely to try vaping to reduce harm associated with their smoking.

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Study: Many in treatment for opioid addiction are prescribed more opioid painkillers (USA)

Many people receiving the most common medication to treat opioid addiction are being prescribed opioid painkillers at the same time, a surprising finding that helps explain why even the most effective substance-abuse therapies don't work nearly as well as experts say they should. - Don Sapatkin, Philadelphia Inquirer
ReGenUC's insight:

The US study also found that people prescribed buprenorphine were ceasing treatment after only two months, well before the greatest benefits of the pharmacotherapy are experienced.

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Edmonton getting four supervised injection sites 

Edmonton getting four supervised injection sites  | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Facilities announced Wednesday will be anchored in McCauley community.
ReGenUC's insight:

While Melbourne waits till September for the report of the Parliamentary inquiry into a trial MSIC in Richmond, Edmonton has announced its FIRST four sites, to open within a year.

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Safe injecting facility: Show some backbone (Vic)

Safe injecting facility: Show some backbone (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Premier Daniel Andrews' refusal to consider trialling a safe injecting room smacks of cowardice.
ReGenUC's insight:

A great selection of letters in today's Age in support of a MSIC in Richmond (and elsewhere). See today's related post on the positive outcomes from yesterday's parliamentary debate: http://sco.lt/7uxiZV.

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Why there's no legal barrier to a Melbourne drug injecting room, despite political setbacks

Why there's no legal barrier to a Melbourne drug injecting room, despite political setbacks | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
There's no legal reason why Victoria can't have its own medically supervised drug injecting room to prevent more overdoses, despite political setbacks.
ReGenUC's insight:

Kate Seear considers some of the reasons given for opposing a Richmond MSIC and the need for urgent action to prevent future overdose fatalities.

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