Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
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Sydney Imam under fire for alcohol edict

Sydney Imam under fire for alcohol edict | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
THE Islamic community has condemned the teachings of a Sydney prayer leader who has argued that drinking alcohol should be allowed in their religion.
ReGenUC's insight:

Says drinking is tolerable within Islam, drunkenness not.

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Alcohol & other drug issues in the media
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Stigmatising Herald Sun coverage undermines reporting on impacts of homelessness (Vic)

Stigmatising Herald Sun coverage undermines reporting on impacts of homelessness (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

‘EXCLUSIVE: Car park junkie den metres from Parliament’ screams the front page of Melbourne’s Herald Sun (September 19).

ReGenUC's insight:

Our response for AOD Media Watch to last week's Herald Sun story on two men living in a CBD car park. See also this response by Katie Horneshaw: http://sco.lt/5orSbZ

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A compelling case for pushing pill testing (Vic)

A compelling case for pushing pill testing (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Only days ago in Sydney, two young Australians died after taking drugs at a music festival. Pill testing at festivals this summer would reduce funerals this summer.
ReGenUC's insight:

Yesterday's Age editorial highlights the need for urgent change to State and Commonwealth Govts' opposition to pill testing and other evidence based harm reduction measures if we are to prevent future overdose deaths.

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30 arrested over drugs at St Kilda festival (Vic)

30 arrested over drugs at St Kilda festival (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
30 people have been arrested at an outdoor dance festival in St Kilda on Saturday night on drug-related charges.
ReGenUC's insight:

1 person charged with trafficking, 29 issued Diversion notices.

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Drug overdose epidemic has been growing exponentially for decades (USA)

Drug overdose epidemic has been growing exponentially for decades (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Death rates from drug overdoses in the US have been on an exponential growth curve that began at least 15 years before the mid-1990s surge in opioid prescribing, suggesting that overdose death rates may continue along this same historical growth trajectory for years to come. 

ReGenUC's insight:

University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health analysis of 40 years of US data shows smooth exponential trajectory in overdose deaths, highlighting the need to look beyond drug-specific crises to the broader factors driving drug consumption, and related risk.

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Public Health England backs review of alcohol charity's guidance

Public Health England backs review of alcohol charity's guidance | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Industry-funded Drinkaware’s website needs full audit, says agency criticised for tie-up
ReGenUC's insight:

PHE (which recently agreed to a joint public health campaign with the alcohol-industry funded Drinkaware) supports an audit of the agency's website following claims that it endorses 'heavy drinking'. See last week's related coverage: http://sco.lt/77rn2v, http://sco.lt/4zigqn

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Overdose deaths among over 65s soar as drugs become more powerful (Vic)

Overdose deaths among over 65s soar as drugs become more powerful (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

STRONGER and more readily available medications are being blamed for part of a huge rise in the number of senior and elderly Victorians dying from drug overdoses.

ReGenUC's insight:

Citing VAADA's Sam Biondo on the need for more targetted responses to the particular needs of older people. See today's related coverage of similar concerns in the US: http://sco.lt/5ng5k9

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Health minister Greg Hunt won't reconsider pill testing (Aus)

Health minister Greg Hunt won't reconsider pill testing (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Mr Hunt also referred questions about whether the Coalition government played a role in the National Capital Authority's decision not to allow the service at an upcoming Canberra music festival back to the agency.
ReGenUC's insight:

Minister Hunt says the Morrison Govt opposes drug checking services in-principle, 'while dodging questions about a Commonwealth agency's refusal to allow the service at an upcoming Canberra music festival.' See today's related posts highlighting the need for the Federal and State/Territory Govt's to end their opposition to pill testing: http://sco.lt/7pdaiH , http://sco.lt/9FLduD , http://sco.lt/8WvQ37           

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Bootleg alcohol death: Police warn against home-brewed booze in Sydney

Bootleg alcohol death: Police warn against home-brewed booze in Sydney | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Police have warned people not to drink a bootleg liquor following the death of a middle-aged man in Sydney's south-west.
ReGenUC's insight:

Rakija contaminated with methanol believed to be responsible for the death. 

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Drug response out of tune (NSW)

Drug response out of tune (NSW) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Gladys Berejiklian’s response to drug-related deaths at a recent music festival ignores evidence and could lead to more unnecessary deaths.

ReGenUC's insight:

John Coyne highlights the need for the implementation of harm reduction measures like pill testing to complement supply reduction measures and prevent future drug related harm.

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Are Music Festivals to Blame for Overdose Deaths? (Aus)

Are Music Festivals to Blame for Overdose Deaths? (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The deaths of two young people in Australia have renewed a debate over drug policy. Some encourage canceling events, while others suggest initiatives to make drug use safer.
ReGenUC's insight:

New York Times coverage of the NSW Govt's response to the most recent overdose deaths at a music festival, and its refusal to consider evidence based harm reduction measures.

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Numbers are decreasing, but Australian women continue to smoke while pregnant

Numbers are decreasing, but Australian women continue to smoke while pregnant | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

The number of Australian women smoking while pregnant has dropped from 13% in 2011 to 10% in 2015, but antenatal expert Dr Wendy Burton says more needs to be done to get the message across to all mothers.

ReGenUC's insight:

Citing new AIHW data on smoking during the first 20 weeks of pregnancy.

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Newborn opioid withdrawal requires a 'cascade of care,' study suggests (USA)

Effective management of neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) -- withdrawal symptoms occurring in infants exposed to opioids in utero -- requires a coordinated 'cascade of care' from prevention through long-term follow-up, reports a study in Advances in Neonatal Care, official journal of the National Association of Neonatal Nurses. The journal is published in the Lippincott portfolio by Wolters Kluwer.
ReGenUC's insight:

US study highlights the need for integrated approaches, continuity and duration of care for vulnerable mothers and their babies.

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Cannabinoid drugs make pain feel 'less unpleasant, more tolerable' (USA)

Cannabinoid drugs make pain feel 'less unpleasant, more tolerable' (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Researchers have determined that cannabinoid drugs do not appear to reduce the intensity of experimental pain, but, instead, may make pain feel less unpleasant and more tolerable.
ReGenUC's insight:

New study helps increase our understanding of what role cannabis may play in future pain management.

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Pill testing: NSW voters back it, despite government's opposition

Pill testing: NSW voters back it, despite government's opposition | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
The state government will not budge on pill testing at festivals, but voters want it.
ReGenUC's insight:

So that's the voting public and anyone who knows anything about reducing drug related harm that back drug checking services. The obvious question to ask is why Australian governments (with the exception of the ACT) remain so resolutely opposed.

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My Friendship With A Heroin User Showed Me Just How Judgemental I Was (Vic)

My Friendship With A Heroin User Showed Me Just How Judgemental I Was (Vic) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
On Wednesday, readers of the Herald Sun were confronted with a cover image of two men injecting heroin into their arms in the corner of a CBD parking lot.
ReGenUC's insight:

Nice piece by Katie Horneshaw on last week's terrible Herald Sun coverage. See also our response to this reporting for AOD Media Watch: http://sco.lt/6HfTG5

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High potency: 22 synthetic-drug ambulance callouts in a week (NZ)

High potency: 22 synthetic-drug ambulance callouts in a week (NZ) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
'The reality is this is going to be an ongoing problem - we haven't solved anything.'
ReGenUC's insight:

More evidence of the increasing harm associated with the use of 'synthetic cannabis' products in NZ.

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Tobacco display ban linked to fewer children buying cigarettes (UK)

Tobacco display ban linked to fewer children buying cigarettes (UK) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Removing displays of tobacco products from shops may have reduced the proportion of children buying cigarettes by 17%, according to new research.

ReGenUC's insight:

Imperial College London study shows potential impact of display bans on smoking by children. It also highlights poor practice by cigarette retailers in selling tobacco products to children.

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Do hangovers get worse as we age? (Aus)

Do hangovers get worse as we age? (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Dispelling myths in an area with surprisingly little research.
ReGenUC's insight:

Not the hardest hitting of articles, but some general discussion of what research evidence tells us about hangovers and their impacts on activities like driving. It's also worth noting that, depending on the amount of alcohol consumed the previous night, it is not uncommon for people to still have alcohol in their bloodstream (and be experiencing the effects of intoxication) the following morning. 

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This is what happens to a shy octopus on ecstasy (USA)

This is what happens to a shy octopus on ecstasy (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A neuroscientist and an octopus expert Eric Edsinger bathed octopuses in the psychedelic drug and observed the results.
ReGenUC's insight:

It's a clickbait-worthy headline, but the article provides a synopsis of the recent upswing in research into the therapeutic applications psychedelics and the drivers of social behaviour.

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Minister to visit Katherine to seek views on decriminalisation of drugs (NT)

Minister to visit Katherine to seek views on decriminalisation of drugs (NT) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
A NT Government committee considering the decriminalisation of drugs will be in Katherine in November to hear from the community.
ReGenUC's insight:

Extended piece by Roxanne Fitzgerald on the work of the committee, including how drug law reform can benefit Indigenous communities.

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New Zealand to pay out millions after thousands wrongly evicted for drug use

New Zealand to pay out millions after thousands wrongly evicted for drug use | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Overzealous meth testing regime unnecessarily made some public housing tenants homeless
ReGenUC's insight:

Highlighting both the damage done by the sort of 'welfare crackdown' that has inspired the Australian Govt's welfare reforms and the impacts of allowing public policy to be driven by cleaning industry marketing claims. See today's related coverage where NZ Drug Foundation's Ross Bell highlights the scale of harm created by these measures: http://sco.lt/7iGqTh. You can see the full NZ Drug Foundation response here: https://www.drugfoundation.org.nz/news-media-and-events/lessons-must-be-learnt-from-meth-report/

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'£1bn in unpalatable county council cuts' ahead in England

'£1bn in unpalatable county council cuts' ahead in England | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Councils bosses warn some authorities may have to be stripped back to the minimum to save money.
ReGenUC's insight:

Local authorities warn that funded services (including AOD treatment) already struggling with the impacts of austerity measures are likely to experience even worse funding cuts.

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Housing New Zealand releases report into its approach to meth contamination

Housing New Zealand releases report into its approach to meth contamination | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
Reimbursement not enough for evicted HNZ tenants, says Drug Foundation
ReGenUC's insight:

NZ Drug Foundation's Ross Bell highlights the clear failings of the HNZ approach and the scale of its impact. See today's related coverage of the compensation the NZ Govt now has to pay to those wrongly evicted: http://sco.lt/8cWzrt. You can see the full NZ Drug Foundation response here: https://www.drugfoundation.org.nz/news-media-and-events/lessons-must-be-learnt-from-meth-report/

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Constructions of alcohol consumption by non-problematised middle-aged drinkers: a qualitative systematic review (Aus)

Constructions of alcohol consumption by non-problematised middle-aged drinkers: a qualitative systematic review (Aus) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it

Current research into alcohol consumption focuses predominantly on problematic drinkers and populations considered likely to engage in risky behaviours. Middle-aged drinkers are an under-researched group, despite emerging evidence that their regular drinking patterns may carry some risk. 

ReGenUC's insight:

Adelaide Uni study considers attitudes towards own moderate drinking to indicate what type of messages may be most effective in public health campaigns.

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Reports warn of growing opioid crisis among seniors (USA)

Reports warn of growing opioid crisis among seniors (USA) | Alcohol & other drug issues in the media | Scoop.it
(HealthDay)—Against the backdrop of an unrelenting opioid crisis, two new government reports warn that America's seniors are succumbing to the pitfalls of prescription painkillers.
ReGenUC's insight:

Reflecting similar concerns about pain management, opioid dependence and overdose risk amongst older people in Australia.

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