People infected with hepatitis C are choosing not to have treatment at the risk of the virus becoming life-threatening, because they are waiting for the government to subsidise drugs that are more likely to cure them, a study says.
This is a pretty poor headline. It implies irresponsible behaviour by people living with Hep C, when there's no mention of the article of the current prohibitive cost (around $1,000 per tablet) of the new drugs. The great majority of those affected simply cannot afford treatment. It is not a matter of simply waiting for a government handout.
IT IS the horror drug that sends users into wide-eyed rage, leaving them clawing at roads, lunging at cars and engaged in all manner of bizarre and dangerous behaviour.
Following yesterday's initial coverage, this article appears to primarily be a promotion for workplace drug testing services. We can probably expect flakka to be depicted as the next 'drug scourge'. See yesterday's related posts: http://sco.lt/7xDXSz.
Report reveals rate of people treated for addiction rose 63 per cent between 2009 and last year.
These numbers are broadly consistent with national data. It's important to remember that the increase is from a very low base. In the same period, we've seen an increase from 6% of people who use our services seeking assistance with amphetamine-type stimulants in 2009 to around 30% this year. While the harms associated with methamphetamine use are significant, it needs to be re-emphasised that the overall numbers of people affected are still very small, compared to other drugs such as alcohol.
The sudden death of a teenage son is tragedy enough for a family. To see his face used by the media to crank up public fears about the latest "killer drug" only amplifies and elongates the grief, especially if your son's death has nothing to do with taking drugs.
A provocative headline, but this is a good piece by Max Daly on the importance of providing people with accurate information about drugs and the dangers of misleading or exaggerated warnings. It also provides an insight into how the issue is considered by police.
A program developed at Boston Medical Center (BMC), which integrates addiction treatment into primary care for patients with or at risk for HIV, has been shown to lower patients' substance dependence and encourage their engagement in treatment. The findings are published online in the Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment.
AOD dependence doesn't occur in isolation. Addressing other related issues as part of a holistic approach to treatment is going to produce more sustainable improvements in people's health and wellbeing.
The Federal Health Minister is being urged to put breakthrough hepatitis C drugs on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme by the end of the year. In an on open letter to the Minister, a coalition of medical associations and health advocacy groups say new anti-viral medications cure nine out of 10 people and should be made available to the quarter of a million Australians living with Hep C.
Citing Hepatitis Australia's Helen Tyrell on the urgent need to improve the accessibility of new HCV treatments.
DANDENONG Police are piloting a program to help some of the area’s worst alcohol offenders.
Good to see the continued expansion of diversion programs in Victoria. Not much detail here, but any move which increases the emphasis on treatment and supporting behaviour change (as opposed to punishment) for non-violent offences is going to be a good thing.
A new Dallas-style buyers club to help thousands of hepatitis C sufferers get life-saving drugs at a fraction of the cost being charged by a pharmaceutical giant has been inundated with inquiries in its first week.
Highlighting the exorbitant cost of the new treatments as a barrier to treatment access. This is better coverage of the issue that yesterday's example from Fairfax: http://sco.lt/7d1Ebx.
TWO of NSW's leading community organisations that cater to people living with HIV have welcomed the NSW Government's implementation of the removal of the co-payment of HIV medication. Announced as a
Good to see the NSW Govt removing potential access barriers to treatment. Co-payments to pharmacies for Opioid Replacement Therapies (like methadone and buprenorphine) continue to be a significant issue within the AOD sector, with many people placed under financial stress to be able to receive their medication. We often see people who have been barred from their registered distributor purely because of their inability to pay dispensing fees.
Governments will be allowed to block tobacco companies from suing over anti-smoking measures under a U.S. proposal being debated by Pacific trading partners as part of a free trade deal spanning a dozen countries.
The proposal is a step forward for future public health policy but, if it only targets tobacco, the TPP still poses a threat to policy responses on other damaging products.
FIRST ON 7: A new synthetic drug that is said to be worse than ice, is being marketed to young people at dirt cheap prices.
We can now expect a flurry of flakka-related stories. See Carl Hart's recent piece on the hyperbole in media coverage of Flakka in the US: http://sco.lt/8qQyDx. See also today's relate posts on 'turbocharged' methamphetamine (http://sco.lt/6QOgsL) and the dangers of exaggerated drug warnings (http://sco.lt/6kHR7x)
Australia is facing a new wave of dangerous synthetic drugs that may rival the ice epidemic, Victoria's Chief Commissioner, Graham Ashton has warned.
There's some confusing language in this article. It appears to be more about other synthetics (probably flakka: http://sco.lt/7xDXSz), not methamphetamine. Not sure what Chief Commissioner Ashton means by 'pre-addiction levels'.
Experts Recommend New York Embrace Evidence-based, Public Health Approaches to Address Opioid Use and Overdose
The new legislation prevents judges from forcing people to cease using pharmacotherapy as a condition for avoiding prison. This is a big step forward for people in recovery from opioid dependence and for evidence based US drug policy.
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