News

What is 'Substance Use'?

In the context of ISSUP’s work the term “substance use” is complex. The following tries to summarise both what “substance use” is, and some of the issues that surround the term. “ Substance ” is a term generally used to refer to the use of a range of substances, often referred to as “drugs”. “ Substances ” include all psychoactive substances (those chemical substances that change brain function and which can result in alterations to

World Mental Health Day 2017

Dhaka: World Mental Health Day Speakers at a press conference at Dhaka Ahsania Mission (DAM) called for taking comprehensive steps for preventing the use of drugs among women, saying that drug addiction affects women's mental health as well as causes other health problems. Drug addiction among women is gradually increasing due to various reasons. Female drug addicts are affected more than their male counterparts. But the scope of treatment and rehabilitation services for them is

ISSUP Executive Committee Meets in Washington, D.C.

The ISSUP Executive Committee had an important meeting in Washington, D.C. on October 1-2, 2017. The beautiful Washington weather was sadly missed behind closed doors as the Executive Committee, which includes Jeff Lee, Joanna Travis-Roberts, and Riva Setiawan from the ISSUP Staff team alongside Melody Heaps, ISSUP’s Chair, Sue Thau and Vivienne Evans. The meeting was also attended by colleagues from the U.S.

8 Steps Towards Minimising the US Opioid Crisis

Current levels of opioid addiction in the US are so alarming that in July 2017 the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis urgently suggested that President Trump declare a national emergency to free up resources and help treat the problem. In the meantime, outlined below are eight steps, some of which are recommended by the President’s Commission, that can help to combat opioid addiction in the US – now. Save lives

National Academy of Medicine Releases New Special Publication Guide

September 21, 2017 Halting the opioid epidemic requires aggressive action across multiple dimensions, including informed, active, and determined front-line leadership from health clinicians working in every setting throughout the nation, says a new National Academy of Medicine special publication developed at the request of the National Governors Association to assist the nation’s governors as they work with clinicians to counter the opioid crisis. Authored by leading national authorities on substance use disorders, the 21-page paper

Terminology

Provisions under the Philippine Republic Act No.9165 or RA 9165 which is known as the "Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002", there was no instance that the words: "addiction", "addict" were used. Instead, words such as "abuse", "drug dependence", "use, "user", "pusher", "victim" and "minor offender" or "violator" were cited in the said law. (Thanks to Wine Carpio for the Video)

New National Alcohol Policy launched by Minster of Health

The new National Alcohol Policy for Malawi has been in the making since 2008, a process originally initiated by a group of NGOs. On the 18th of August almost ten years later the Minister of Health, Atupele Muluzi, could launch the final document at a colourful ceremony in Dedza District. “With the National Alcohol Policy now in place, communities will be supported and empowered to use their local knowledge and expertise in adopting effective approaches

A Serious Matter: Laughing Gas Prompts Review of UK’s Psychoactive Substances Act

Introduced in 2016, The Psychoactive Substances Act is designed to deal with the influx of new drugs often labelled ‘legal highs’. The Act bans any substance that "by stimulating or depressing the person’s central nervous system… affects the person’s mental functioning or emotional state." It exempts substances such as tobacco or nicotine-based products, alcohol, caffeine, as well as medical products as defined in the 2012 Human Medicines Regulations. Nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, is regularly

Worrying Substance Use Trends among over 50s

In 2011, the Royal College of Psychiatrists advised that over 50s should not exceed more than 11 units of alcohol a week, compared with 14 for the rest of the adult population, due to age-related physiological and metabolic changes. Since then, voices of concern among substance use professionals have only grown louder following the recent release of figures which seem to indicate that alcohol and drug consumption among the over 50s is increasing globally. In

Job Opportunity: Consultant for the Pan American Journal of Public Health

The Pan American Journal of Public Health is currently looking for a Consultant to work in the editorial office at Washington, D.C., supporting editorial tasks related to the implementation of new editorial features, translation requests, special issues or supplements, the journal website, the peer-review process, metrics analysis, and graphic layout analysis. Mandatory skills Proficiency in English and Spanish; advanced knowledge of Portuguese or French would be an asset; Competence in editorial processes, including the management

Evidence Lacking on Benefits of Cannabis for Treating Chronic Pain or PTSD

By Kelly Young Edited by David G. Fairchild, MD, MPH , and Jaye Elizabeth Hefner, MD Evidence is limited on the benefits of cannabis use for treating chronic pain and post-traumatic stress disorder, according to two reviews in the Annals of Internal Medicine . The review on chronic pain included 75 studies that examined the potential benefits and harms of cannabis use. There was low-strength evidence that cannabis could help ease neuropathic pain in some

Call for Papers: Ensure Healthy Development for All Youth through the Power of Prevention

The Journal of the Society for Social Work and Research ( JSSWR ) announces a special issue dedicated to the prevention of behavioural health problems in children and youth. This JSSWR special issue will feature empirical manuscripts addressing effective prevention practice and policy—specifically through intervention research, dissemination and implementation research, and methodological innovations. Scope and Topics of Interest Papers in this issue are intended to demonstrate progress in "Unleashing the Power of Prevention" through testing

N.E. Fentanyl Deaths 'Like No Other Epidemic' - Boston Globe

Mexican cartels are delivering vast quantities of the inexpensive and powerful synthetic drug fentanyl to New England, causing the highest rate of fentanyl-related deaths in the nation while creating a plague that the area’s top drug enforcement official describes as “like no other epidemic” he’s ever seen. It’s a pipeline that often begins in China, winds through Mexico, and flows into distribution cities such as Lawrence and Springfield, according to Michael J. Ferguson, the special

UK Health Professionals Call for Minimum Unit Pricing of Alcohol in England

Senior health professionals are calling for Westminster to introduce minimum unit pricing of alcohol and clampdown on drinks advertising in England. They claim that within the next five years up to 63,000 people across the country will die as a result of liver problems linked to heavy alcohol consumption. Liver disease claims around 12,000 lives a year in England. This number has risen by 400% since 1970. In 2012, a ruling appeared to have paved

ISSUP at the 22nd Annual National Institute on Drug Abuse International Forum

The 22nd Annual National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) International Forum was held in Montreal, Canada from June 16th – 19th, 2017. The meeting was co-sponsored by the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction (CCSA) and followed by a joint NIDA International Forum/College on Problems of Drug Dependence (CPDD) poster session. The opening of the International Forum was chaired by NIDA’s International Programme Director, Steven W. Gust, and included a welcome address by CCSA’s

Should you Recommend Acupuncture to Patients with Substance Use Disorders?

Acupuncture is an ancient therapeutic tool known to be the core of traditional Chinese medicine. Two theories suggest positive outcomes in patients treated with acupuncture: The oxidative stress reduction theory states that a “large body of evidences demonstrated that acupuncture has [an] antioxidative effect in various diseases, but the exact mechanism remains unclear.” The neurophysiological theory states that “acupuncture stimulation can facilitate the release of certain neuropeptides in the CNS, eliciting profound physiological effects and

Funding Initiatives in the Field of Drug Policy: Call for Proposals

The Justice Programme for the period 2014 to 2020 established by Regulation (EU) No 1382/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council on 17 December 2013, and in particular Art. 4 and 6(1), outlines as a specific objective the support of initiatives in the field of drugs policy as regards judicial cooperation and crime prevention aspects closely linked to the general objective of the Programme, in so far as they are not covered by

ISSUP Staff in the Spotlight: Joanna Travis-Roberts

What do you enjoy most about working for ISSUP? That's a tricky question, because there are so many different elements to my work. I love presenting ISSUP and meeting people who are using and benefiting from our outputs, I always find their opinion insightful. I think we have a great team and our staff meetings are very creative and productive, especially when we’re putting our heads together to develop ideas or solve a problem. What

Moving Thailand’s Mountain of Alcohol-Related Harm

Few low- and middle-income countries have done so much to protect their citizens from alcohol-related harms, but Thailand still faces challenges. Apiradee Treerutkuarkul reports. Today Thailand is one of the few developing countries with laws and policies aimed at preventing alcohol-related problems, such as liver disease, cancers and alcohol dependence as well as road crashes, poverty, violence and crime. Read more...

Please note that the content provided by the ISSUP Knowledge Share does not necessarily reflect the views of ISSUP. It is provided to inform and stimulate discussion of key issues in the field with a view to encouraging evidence-based, high quality and ethical policy and practice. While every effort is made to moderate submissions by external users, exercise caution before assuming these to be grounded in sound scientific practice as this may not always be the case.