Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
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Grog crackdown makes mark but rehab in doubt (NT)

Grog crackdown makes mark but rehab in doubt (NT) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Stationing police outside bottle shops in Territory towns has an impact on alcohol consumption. The latest figures show consumption has dropped to the lowest level on record, but the statistics do not include the impact of the mandatory rehabilitation policy or punitive protection orders.

ReGenUC's insight:

Good to see some indication of improvements, but APOs and mandatory rehab still have the potential to harm already vulnerable people.

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Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
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Alcohol floor price in WA: Unfair impost or potential lifesaver?

Alcohol floor price in WA: Unfair impost or potential lifesaver? | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Angered by the sale of cheap wine by Aldi, the WA Health Minister flags the introduction of a floor price on alcohol to stop the sale of bargain-basement booze, but how would it work and what could it achieve?
ReGenUC's insight:

A more considered look at the evidence supporting proposed minimum pricing in WA. See today's related coverage of alcohol industry claims that such measures aren't effective: http://sco.lt/8RY9DN

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Telling war stories is not good drug education (Aus)

A former crystal methamphetamine (or ‘ice’) user in Queensland announced in August 2016 that her business was talking to primary and secondary school students about her experience with the drug. Her approach involved describing to young audiences her drug use, her dependence, and her way of life that followed, including criminal acts and acts of self-harm.1 Although it may be done with good intentions, this approach is at best a waste of time and at worst could potentially increase the chance of future drug harm; not least of which because it could have prevented more useful drug prevention approaches from taking place.

ReGenUC's insight:

The ADF's Geoff Munro considers the intuitive appeal of such approaches, and their potential to do more harm than good. He also calls for evidence based practice in drug education programs.

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Australia should start providing heroin assisted treatment

Harm Reduction Australia outlines how this intervention could greatly benefit a small subset of people who use heroin and their communities
ReGenUC's insight:

The introduction of a HAT trial was considered (and rejected) by the Howard Govt. Since then, the evidence for its effectiveness has become even more compelling.

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DRUG OVERDOSE: 42 killed by drugs in Hervey Bay region (Qld)

DRUG OVERDOSE: 42 killed by drugs in Hervey Bay region (Qld) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
MORE than 40 people have died from drug overdose which is almost 80% higher than the national average.
ReGenUC's insight:

Citing data from Penington's new Annual Overdose Report.

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E-cigs 'definitely' safer than smoking (UK)

E-cigs 'definitely' safer than smoking (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
More than 20 health bodies in Scotland sign a consensus on the harms and benefits of e-cigarettes.
ReGenUC's insight:

See today's related post referencing the role e-cigarettes may have played in reducing smoking levels in the UK: http://sco.lt/7iCjBZ

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Disney branded 'champagne' marketed to children in Europe despite company pledge to ban them

Disney branded 'champagne' marketed to children in Europe despite company pledge to ban them | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A RANGE of Disney branded non-alcoholic drinks that resemble champagne are being marketed in the UK and Europe despite the company pledging to ban such products from sale more than one year ago.
ReGenUC's insight:

More dubious alcohol industry practice. See today's related post on industry resistance to proposed minimum pricing in WA: http://sco.lt/8RY9DN.

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Higher prices 'won't end alcohol harm' (WA)

Higher prices 'won't end alcohol harm' (WA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
ALCOHOL retailers have warned that attempts to impose minimum prices on cheap booze would result in all drinkers paying more for their favourite tipple, while doing little to reduce problem drinking.
ReGenUC's insight:

...says the alcohol industry. The research evidence suggests otherwise. See today's related post that considers the WA proposals and some of the evidence of effectiveness for such measures in reducing alcohol related harm: http://sco.lt/53MSRd

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I've had a problem with drinking since 15, now I'm finally ready to talk (Aus)

I've had a problem with drinking since 15, now I'm finally ready to talk (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
I loved to drink. Immediately. It was the medicine that got me through life – until it wasn't, writes Yumi Stynes.
ReGenUC's insight:

Yumi Stynes reflects on her past drinking and her recovery.

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Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte orders police to kill eldest son, Paolo, if drug smuggling 'rumours' are true

Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte orders police to kill eldest son, Paolo, if drug smuggling 'rumours' are true | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte says he has ordered police to kill his eldest son if they can prove he is involved in smuggling or drug trafficking.
ReGenUC's insight:

We can be pretty sure that this will never happen. But, even if it did, how would this validate the killing of 9,000 other Filipinos?

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Not drinking or driving, teens increasingly put off traditional markers of adulthood (USA)

Not drinking or driving, teens increasingly put off traditional markers of adulthood (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Said one mother of a homebody teen: “Maybe . . . it’s just safer to not become an adult.”
ReGenUC's insight:

Yet more evidence that, in spite of the usual claims to the contrary, the kids are actually alright (and less likely to experience significant AOD related harm than the rest of us).

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Exclusive: Google is cracking down on sketchy rehab ads

Exclusive: Google is cracking down on sketchy rehab ads | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Following a Verge report about rehabs gaming Google, the company has begun pulling AdWords
ReGenUC's insight:

See today's related story on demands for regulation of private rehab services in Victoria: http://sco.lt/9H3V6v

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Life after addiction: survey examines recovery in Canada

Life after addiction: survey examines recovery in Canada | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Recovery from substance abuse can be a lifelong battle for many, and that's why Rand Teed wants to help others see there is life after addiction.
ReGenUC's insight:

The survey's findings help to challenge some of the usual stereotypes:

  • 62 per cent had completed post-secondary education.
  • 78 per cent were actively employed.
  • 49 per cent were married
  • 61 per cent had kids.
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‘We mustn't continue to fear the addict’ (Vic)

‘We mustn't continue to fear the addict’ (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

I have been asked why, as a pharmacist, I feel so strongly about the issues that affect people who inject drugs. The question surprises me because I’d hope we were all concerned with the drug use pandemic gripping so many as we approach 2020, not just pharmacists.

ReGenUC's insight:

Anyone who has had to attend a pharmacist to pick up pharmacotherapies knows just how poorly they are treated. Angelo Pricolo calls for change to pharmacists' practice ahead of Greens leader Richard DiNatale's address to the PSA/Guild Harm Minimisation Forum. 

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ACT government approves free pill testing at Spilt Milk festival

ACT government approves free pill testing at Spilt Milk festival | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A groundbreaking Australian first is coming to Canberra in November.
ReGenUC's insight:

An important step for evidence based drug policy in Australia. See Harm Reduction Australia's media release: http://www.harmreductionaustralia.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/Pill-Testing-Media-Release-Sept-2017.pdf

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Vaping ban: Senate committee rejects changing e-cigarette laws (Aus)

Vaping ban: Senate committee rejects changing e-cigarette laws (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
E-cigarettes are banned in Australia and a Federal Senate inquiry recently voted to uphold that ban until further scientific research into the safety and effect of vaping can take place. But you're still likely to see people vaping.
ReGenUC's insight:

See today's related posts on UK support for the role of e-cigarettes in reducing tobacco related harm: http://sco.lt/5pkn4b, http://sco.lt/7iCjBZ

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Are alcohol-related disparities between LGB and heterosexual youth decreasing? (Canada)

Are alcohol-related disparities between LGB and heterosexual youth decreasing? (Canada) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

This week, as part of our Special Series on Youth Risky Behavior, the DRAM reviews a study by Jessica Fish and her colleagues examining changes in the differences in drinking behavior between heterosexual and LGB youth surveyed in 1998, 2003, 2008, and 2013.

ReGenUC's insight:

The study finds that, while overall levels of alcohol consumption by young people are decreasing, young people who are lesbian, gay and bisexual continue to drink more and earlier than their heterosexual peers.

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Cell phone data coupled with sewage testing show drug use patterns (Norway)

The drugs people inhale, inject or ingest ultimately end up in some form down the toilet. So scientists have started monitoring drug use through sewage-based epidemiology. But this approach hasn't taken into account the variation in number of people who add to wastewater in a given area at a given time. Now one team reports in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology a way to account for commutes and vacations: by tracking cell phone signals.
ReGenUC's insight:

The next step for wastewater analysis? Tracking mobile phone data to determine population in sewrage catchment areas.

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Pills prescribed for alcoholism might not work, study finds (UK)

Pills prescribed for alcoholism might not work, study finds (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Review of five drugs – including one linked to deaths – says there is no body of reliable evidence behind any of them
ReGenUC's insight:

Review of placebo trials of nalmefene, naltrexone, acamprosate, baclofen and topimarate highlights lack of evidence of effectiveness.

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Smoking quit rates highest in 10 years (UK)

Smoking quit rates highest in 10 years (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

A new report suggests success rates for quitting smoking are at their highest level for a decade.

ReGenUC's insight:

Cancer Research UK's George Butterworth claims some of the national success is due to e-cigarettes.

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AMC moves to automated methadone dosing (ACT)

AMC moves to automated methadone dosing (ACT) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Iris recognition is now being used to help give inmates the right dose of methadone in Canberra's jail.
ReGenUC's insight:

The AMC measures were introduced following the dose-related death of Mr Freeman: http://sco.lt/8Gv0Bl

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Charity warns that 'legal high' ban has led to switch to other illegal drugs (UK)

Charity warns that 'legal high' ban has led to switch to other illegal drugs (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The Government’s blanket ban on so-called ‘legal highs’ has prompted a rise in the use of class A drugs, a drug charity that is partly funded by the Scottish Government has warned.
ReGenUC's insight:

Highlighting the limitations of policy measures that focus on a particular drug type: any impact on its consumption typically just displaces demand to other drugs. A return to 'traditional' drug types has the potential for reduced harm, but this would depend on just what is in the cocaine and MDMA that people are using.  It's quite possible that they are effectively just novel psychoactive substances in a different form.

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Police Association calls on police to form a nationwide taskforce on synthetic drugs (NZ)

Police Association calls on police to form a nationwide taskforce on synthetic drugs (NZ) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Just urging people to give up synthetic cannabis won't save "a single life" says police association.
ReGenUC's insight:

Police call for a national, co-ordinated response to the immediate public health risks associated with synthetic cannabis products in NZ. The article also cites NZ Drug Foundation's Ross Bell, and responses from NZ's political parties.

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States expand investigation of opioid makers, distributors (USA)

Attorneys general from most states are broadening their investigation into the opioid industry as a nationwide overdose crisis continues to claim thousands of lives.
ReGenUC's insight:

See yesterday's related coverage: http://sco.lt/5aZXf7

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The drugs people want to quit - and the ones they want to keep taking (USA)

The drugs people want to quit - and the ones they want to keep taking (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Almost everyone who takes crack cocaine wants to quit - but less than 30% of cannabis users do. 

ReGenUC's insight:

US study excluded tobacco.  It also found people were more likely to want to quit Aderall and 'Depressants' (there's no explanation here, but we're guessing this is anti-depressants?) than Crack. Cannabis, alcohol & ecstasy the three drugs people were most likely to want to keep using.

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Drug rehab providers in Victoria want regulation to protect patients

Drug rehab providers in Victoria want regulation to protect patients | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Private drug rehabilitation providers are growing increasingly frustrated at a lack of government action to regulate the trouble-plagued sector amid claims of exploitative billing practices and poorly trained staff.
ReGenUC's insight:

As we've said previously (http://www.regen.org.au/news-advocacy/regen-in-the-media/781-decline-of-mainstream-media-a-boon-for-for-profit-drug-services-a-bust-for-informed-debate-11-08-16), regulation of for-profit services is long overdue. It's essential to reduce the incidence of exploitative and unethical behaviour by service providers and to ensure that there is some transparency about their methods. See today's related post on Google pulling rehab related AdWords to prevent exploitative marketing by US services: http://sco.lt/58WWJ7

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