Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
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Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
Topics being covered in the media that are of interest to us
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Landmark report sparks warning over Australia's addiction to 'mind-eating' ice

Landmark report sparks warning over Australia's addiction to 'mind-eating' ice | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A landmark report on the scale of Australia's ice epidemic has prompted federal justice minister, Michael Keenan, to warn that "our nation's addiction to this mind-eating, personality-distorting, life-ending drug" is undermining the social fabric of communities.
ReGenUC's insight:

The persistent use of such hyper-inflated language by our senior politicians undermines efforts to have an informed public debate about methamphetamine use. This week's #QandA episode saw Christopher Pyne assert that anyone who uses methamphetamine becomes instantaneously dependent. 

See the full ACC report here: http://sco.lt/6XenvV 

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Harper government moves to ban supervised injection services for drug users in Canada

Harper government moves to ban supervised injection services for drug users in Canada | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Today, the House of Commons passed Bill C-2, the Respect for Communities Act. Pretty title, but like so much Conservative legislation, the meaning of the title, like the bill, is cruelly ironicWhat the Respect for Communities Act does is effectively ban supervised injection facilities like Insite. The bill will make it much harder for Insite to stay open, and it effectively prevents a similar centre from opening in any other Canadian city.

ReGenUC's insight:

This would be a big step backwards for Canadian harm reduction and a blow for evidence-based practice. See our position statement on establishing a MSIC in Melbourne (and the supporting evidence): http://www.regen.org.au/advocacy  Meanwhile, Nevada considers approving Heroin-assisted Treatment: http://sco.lt/6Bh4fh 

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Nevada State Senate to Consider Groundbreaking Heroin-assisted Treatment Program (USA)

Nevada State Senate to Consider Groundbreaking Heroin-assisted Treatment Program (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Last week, Nevada State Senator Richard Segerblom introduced groundbreaking legislation, Senate Bill 275, which creates a four-year heroin-assisted treatment pilot project.

ReGenUC's insight:

Good news from the Drug Policy Alliance. HAT has been shown to be an effective response to the small proportion of people for whom other treatment options do not work. Meanwhile, the Canadian govt is trying to ban new medically supervised injecting centres: http://sco.lt/8sSxgf.

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Australia's first medical marijuana company will kick off its 'farm to pharma' strategy by releasing a dope pill

Australia's first medical marijuana company will kick off its 'farm to pharma' strategy by releasing a dope pill | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Australian-owned medical marijuana company Phytotech has merged with MMJ Bioscience in an effort to expand from cultivating cannabis to developing and distributing it in pill form.

ReGenUC's insight:

More evidence of the impending 'greenrush'.

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Sheldyn Devecchi's curator insight, March 25, 2015 12:18 AM

This is meaningful to my 5 year journey as in 5 years time I personally  would like to see Medicinal Cannabis legalised in all Australian States. In my opinion Medicinal Marijuana in tablet form would be very beneficial to all patients using it. Marijuana is a natural plant that is being used to treat cancer, epilepsy, seizures, HIV, Multiple Sclerosis and multiple other disease and disorders. My pop has Dimensia and the doctors have given him Medicinal Marijuana and it is the only thing that calms him down and makes him seem like himself, he is still deteriorating badly though, which is very sad and horrible, he can't remember who he is at times, where he is, he acts like a child and gets very aggressive. This is why I would like to see cannabis legalised in all states so other patients can get this help.

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Researchers explore impact of installing alcohol ignition interlock devices in vehicles (USA)

If every new car made in the United States had a built-in blood alcohol level tester that prevented impaired drivers from driving the vehicle, how many lives could be saved, injuries prevented, and injury-related dollars left unspent?
ReGenUC's insight:

Interlocks are now pretty common in Australia: http://sco.lt/5MM2hl, http://sco.lt/9BGWkThttp://sco.lt/6aEifJ 

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New Zealand Facing Spurt in Online Drug Trade: Christchurch ‘P’ Back In Circulation

New Zealand is showing a sharp rise in online drug trade, with many New Zealanders going online to buy drugs anonymously. According to Ross Bell of the New Zealand Drug Foundation, the trade is impossible to track and law “enforcement is pretty stumped by this new challenge.”  

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Secret Nigerian drinking dens in Kano

Secret Nigerian drinking dens in Kano | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Beer may be officially banned in Kano but bars in the Christian area of the northern Nigeria city are popular with Muslim drinkers, writes the BBC's Lucy Fleming.
ReGenUC's insight:

More evidence of prohibition's ineffectiveness in preventing use of outlawed substances.

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Calls for clean needles in West Australian prisons as one in ten inmates test positive for Hepatitis C

Calls for clean needles in West Australian prisons as one in ten inmates test positive for Hepatitis C | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Support group Hepatitis WA says efforts to reduce the prevalence of Hepatitis C in the community are doomed to fail unless prisoners are given access to clean needles.
ReGenUC's insight:

See related coverage from the weekend on NSW prisoners having potentially contracted HIV from shared needles: http://sco.lt/66zLub

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Warning welfare card may fuel crime (Aus)

Warning welfare card may fuel crime (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

STOPPING welfare recipients from spending taxpayer benefits on gambling, alcohol and drugs could force more into sex work and crime, says the Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs Council of Tasmania.

ReGenUC's insight:

The Govt has said that there are no plans for widespread use of the card. But the potential risks of this sort of intervention are clear. More coverage here: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/government-to-trial-new-welfare-card-in-disadvantaged-communities/story-fn59niix-1227273358118 

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Teenagers in junior sports told how to use caffeine supplements like No-Doz to compete and win (NSW)

Teenagers in junior sports told how to use caffeine supplements like No-Doz to compete and win (NSW) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
CHILDREN as young as 12 were told how to use caffeine tablets to beat sporting rivals at a sports institute seminar.
ReGenUC's insight:

With obvious links to our earlier posts on methamphetmaine use in country football leagues: http://sco.lt/57NIUT

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Noufel Harris's curator insight, March 23, 2015 9:10 PM

Cant pretend that this is not a deep-rooted problem anymore.

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Victorian Government pushes to ban powdered alcohol

Victorian Government pushes to ban powdered alcohol | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The Victorian Government says it will move to ban powdered alcohol, following concerns the product will be launched in the coming months.
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AMA and drug experts weigh in on ACT medical marijuana scheme

The Australian Medical Association has expressed concern about a proposed medical marijuana scheme for the ACT, calling for more clinical research and for a national approach to cannabis being used for health outcomes. 
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Aussies love the end of work on Friday and a couple of drinks with friends but often it takes a bad turn (NSW)

Aussies love the end of work on Friday and a couple of drinks with friends but often it takes a bad turn (NSW) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
THANK god it’s Friday but maybe not always. It seems steeped in our culture and consciousness — TGIF! We all look forward to a weekend off, we celebrate, go out and drink ...
ReGenUC's insight:

Dr Gordian Fulde's regular summary of the weekend's AOD-related presentations at Sydney's St Vincent's hospital.

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Being drunk and alone is a toxic cocktail (Vic)

Being drunk and alone is a toxic cocktail (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Ashleigh Humphrys' death prompts questions and one key truth.
ReGenUC's insight:

This is in no way about blaming Ms Humphrys for what happened, but a powerful reminder of people's potential vulnerability when they are intoxicated and the importance of looking after your mates.

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Let’s get one thing clear: drinking while pregnant is wrong (Aus)

Let’s get one thing clear: drinking while pregnant is wrong (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
“My mum drank when she was having me and I turned out fine.” How many times have you heard that statement from a pregnant woman as she confidently quaffs a glass of wine?
ReGenUC's insight:

While this sort of tone can undermine efforts to promote behaviour change, it is good to see the focus (for once) not being on the socially marginalised and economically vulnerable.  Concerns about overuse of alcohol amongst wealthy, professional women are getting increasing attention.  One thing this article does not address is the fact that the greatest risk for FASD is associated with drinking in early pregnancy: a time when many women do not even know they are pregnant.

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Channel Nine refuses to publicly support or defend star presenter Karl Stefanovic over drug comments

CHANNEL NINE has refused to publicly support or defend their star presenter Karl Stefanovic over controversial comments he made about drug use.
ReGenUC's insight:

While there has been significant recent progress in promoting drug policy discussion around medical cannabis use, stories like this show how far we still have to go before people can discuss their own experiences without fear of stigmatisation.

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Drugs involved in up to 30 per cent of fatal road accidents forcing focus on drug drivers (NSW)

Drugs involved in up to 30 per cent of fatal road accidents forcing focus on drug drivers (NSW) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The rate of drivers picked up for drug driving now exceeds the rate of drink drivers and up to 30 per cent of fatal road accidents are caused by drivers using illicit substances, according to research.
ReGenUC's insight:

Last night's 7.30 Report story.

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Thomas Schiavon's curator insight, March 26, 2015 8:12 AM

After the success of the plans to reduce drink driving in Australia it looks like police have now become interested in the increasing drug driving. The town I currently live in has a high youth unemployment and drug use involving both hard drugs and party drugs. Hopefully new campaigns to combat drug driving will make the roads even safer for us. 

Rodney Dorron's curator insight, March 27, 2015 4:22 AM

Something to always  keep in mind during an investigation. Observe and report any signs that point to external factors.

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Legal marijuana in Colorado is three times stronger than it was 30 years ago (USA)

Legal marijuana in Colorado is three times stronger than it was 30 years ago (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Marijuana has been legally for sale in Colorado for more than a year and researchers have for the first time taken the weed into the lab to take stock of the drug’s potency and contaminants.

ReGenUC's insight:

Study cites THC values up to 30%.

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Ice in sport a 'dangerous practice' (Aus) - audio

Amphetamine use in sport puts players at a risk, but the Australian Drug Foundation says alcohol remains "the biggest drug problem we've got".
ReGenUC's insight:

Following up on yesterdy's coverage of methamphetamine use in suburban and country football leagues (http://sco.lt/57NIUT), ADF's Geoff Munro talks about the harms associated with stimulant use in sport.

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Asia's deadly secret: The scourge of the betel nut

Asia's deadly secret: The scourge of the betel nut | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Taiwan is trying to tackle the popular habit of chewing of betel nuts, which has caused a huge rise in the incidence of oral cancer.
ReGenUC's insight:

Taiwan introduces screening and education programs.

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GPs call for real time prescription drug database in bid to save lives (Aus)

The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) is again calling for the immediate rollout of a real-time prescription drug database to reduce the alarming number of people dying from prescription drug related overdoses.

ReGenUC's insight:

RACGP media release in response to Victorian data on the prevalence of prescription medications (particularly benzodiazepines) in overdose fatalities, presented at #IMiA15 over the weekend. See related coverage: http://sco.lt/8iiJGr

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Cashless welfare card to stop addicts using money on drugs, alcohol and gambling (Aus)

Cashless welfare card to stop addicts using money on drugs, alcohol and gambling (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A CASHLESS welfare card that stops addicts spending taxpayer-funded cash on drugs, alcohol and gambling will be trialled in some states by the end of the year.
ReGenUC's insight:

As has been pointed out the the ATDC Tasmania, this will not stop people getting access to alcohol and other drugs. It will simply require them to come up with alternative forms of payment: http://sco.lt/5FSrhJ

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Medical marijuana for injured vets cost government $4.3M, 10 times more than last year (USA)

Medical marijuana for injured vets cost government $4.3M, 10 times more than last year (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The cost of providing medical marijuana to the country's injured soldiers under a Veterans Affairs program jumped to more than $4.3 million this fiscal year, an increase of 10 times what was spent last year.
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Hard-line law and order policy fails to rehabilitate or cut crime (Tas/Vic)

ACCORDING to a recent media report, a newly appointed Magistrate in Tasmania thinks sentences are “far less” than what she was used to seeing in Victoria.

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Big rise in P-platers caught drug driving in SA

Big rise in P-platers caught drug driving in SA | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
ALMOST twice as many P-plate drivers are being caught driving under the influence of drugs as those caught with alcohol in their system, latest figures show, despite only one in ten tests targeting drugs.
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Benjamin Ebzery's curator insight, March 29, 2015 5:25 AM

This is and article on p papers driving with drugs and alcohol in their systems.