‘Research tells us that our early life experience programmes the brain and the body for the environment that it encounters,’ writes psychotherapist Elaine Rose in her article ‘Behind Closed Doors’, talking about effects of abuse in childhood and its links with substance use – one of the the most difficult and complicated issues we encounter.
Carrying the burden of such experiences should never be the hidden problem that stands in the way of treatment and help, when our professional skills can be tuned in to start the healing process. We need to acknowledge the scale of the problem and do much more to reach out to those affected.
Read our round-up of what’s happening across the UK
Scotland has once again recorded its highest ever number of drug-related deaths, at 706 – almost two per day.
There were 1.09m hospital admissions for an alcohol-related disease, injury or condition in 2014-15, up from 1.06m the previous year, according to the latest figures from the Heath and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC).
Sweeping reforms of the prison system were announced as part of last month’s Queen’s Speech, including the establishment of six autonomous ‘reform prisons’
The Queen’s Speech saw the government announce a major shake-up of the prison system. DDN hears from a former governor about what sort of impact the measures might have
The declining levels of MDMA use in Europe since the early to mid 2000s have been reversed, according EMCDDA’s annual drug report
The world needs global drug policies that ‘put people first’, UNODC executive director Yury Fedotov told the UN General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on drugs in New York
E-cigarettes are much safer than smoking, do not result in the normalisation of smoking and do not act as a gateway to smoking, says a report from the Royal College of Physicians (RCP).
The world needs global drug policies that ‘put people first’, UNODC executive director Yury Fedotov told the opening session of the UN General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on drugs.
There are ‘no signs of a slowdown’ in the development and discovery of new psychoactive substances (NPS), according to the EMCDDA’s latest report on the continent’s drug markets.
Nearly 60 per cent of residential treatment services have reported a decrease in funding to the Recovery Partnership’s latest State of the sector report, along with nearly 40 per cent of community services.
Drugs should be decriminalised across the globe as existing policies are directly contributing to ‘many of today’s most urgent public health crises’, according to a commission of medical experts.
A report setting out what a regulated cannabis market in the UK could look like has been published by the Liberal Democrats.
More than 70 per cent of directors of public health say that drug and alcohol services in their area are likely to be reduced in the coming financial year, according to a survey by their membership body, the Association of Directors of Public Health (ADPH).
Health staff at a large Nottinghamshire prison risk being ‘overwhelmed’ by the demands of treating people seriously affected by use of new psychoactive substances (NPS), according to a report by HM Inspectorate of Prisons.
More than 70 per cent of directors of public health say that drug and alcohol services in their area are likely to be reduced in 2016-17, according to a survey by their membership body, the Association of Directors of Public Health (ADPH).
Men should drink no more than 14 units of alcohol per week, according to strict new guidelines from the chief medical officer. The previous recommendation was 14 units for women and 21 for men.
The Government of Ireland is considering the introduction of drug consumption rooms, as well as decriminalising small amounts of drugs for personal use.
The government’s controversial public health responsibility deal for alcohol has pursued initiatives ‘known to have limited efficacy’ while obstructing more meaningful action, according to a damning report from the Institute of Alcohol Studies (IAS).
More children than previously thought are dying or being hospitalised after ingesting opioid substitution therapy (OST) medications, according to a new report from Adfam.
The quality of treatment for heroin users is being threatened by diminishing funds and ‘disruptive re-procurement processes’, according to a new report from the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD)
A round-up of national news
A look at local news from across the country
Don’t miss any of the latest magazine features
The UK’s public health bodies have added their voices to the call for decriminalisation.
Painkiller addiction is a growing issue. In the first of a three-part series, DDN asks, are we responding?
Encouraging clients to talk about their childhood can help to release them from the long-suppressed trauma of abuse, as psychotherapist Elaine Rose explains
How can we develop our workforce against a backdrop of cuts and challenges? DDN reports from the FDAP conference.
Promotional Feature: Made to Measure
It’s time to ditch the ‘one size fits all’ approach and be ready to respond to clients’ needs – whatever stage they’re at.
Wales is gearing up to offer medically supervised injecting centres – an initiative that can’t happen soon enough, says Ifor Glyn
Promotional Feature: Embracing Change
Andy had been using alcohol and drugs for more than 20 years before he was admitted to Gloucester House Rehabilitation centre
Steve Hodgkins is the founder and CEO of Jobs, Friends and Houses – a multi award-winning social enterprise offering employment, peer support and accommodation to people in recovery from addiction.
Phoenix Futures has launched the Griffiths Edwards Fund to champion his belief that ‘no one size fits all’
Promotional feature: An honest relationship
It’s time to stop relying on outdated treatment models and offer clients an approach they can relate to, says Kenneth Robinson
UK governments agree that above all what they want out of treatment is ‘recovery’.
Changes UK chief executive Steve Dixon has ambitious plans for Recovery Central in Birmingham
Promotional feature: Stigma: Hepatitus C and drug misuse
An understanding of existing barriers to hepatitis C care is important to help empower people with the virus to access help.
Sector’s reactions to last month’s event in New York, and DDN hears from one of the architects of President Obama’s drug policy
Is the focus on recovery undermining a highly skilled workforce?
Promotional Feature: Complex Care
Pulse Addictions provides tailored training, consultancy and clinical management in the field of substance misuse and associated areas to organisations across the UK.
Last July the government asked Dame Carol Black to conduct an independent review into the challenges of getting and staying in work for people with drug and alcohol problems, or who are obese.
How can a system designed to ensure the quality of car parts help us in the substance misuse sector?
Promotional feature: The inspector calls
David Finney gives the latest essential chapter on preparing for Care Quality Commission inspection
NACOA’s (the National Association for Children of Alcoholics) annual lecture at the House of Commons set out an action plan to give the issue the public profile it deserves. DDN reports
Promotional Feature: Hepatitis C: New hope, old problems
People with hepatitis C in the UK have a greater chance of being cured now than at any other point in the history of the disease.
The countdown to the Psychoactive Substances Act has been marked by controversy. Kit Caless shares debate from Addaction’s recent conference
Thirty years after Michael Linnell’s first graphic harm reduction campaigns burst onto the scene he recalls the outrage – and the results – that spurred him on
Offering support to families affected by addiction means acknowledging the ups and downs of a close bond, says John Taylor
The day’s opening session heard a range of passionate presentations on the theme of getting your message across
The morning’s second session, chaired by Peter Hunter, allowed audience members to put their concerns to some of the sector’s key players
State of the Nation: One of the day’s lunchtime sessions heard delegates debate the current state of English drug policy
‘Don’t let anyone tell you that you don’t have valuable skills,’ Big Issue founder John Bird told delegates in the day’s powerful final session
Here members of the Nottingham team tell us about a system they believe is working well. We’re relying on you to let us know what’s happening in your area
Delegates enjoyed demonstrations on complimentary therapies and healthy eating
Jason and Elizabeth met at a DDN conference and brought little Oscar to meet us at this year’s event
Research consultant, Arun Sondhi, from the Centre for Public Innovation (CPI), talks to DDN about the findings of his latest research into take-home naloxone in prisons.
There’s still time too book your place for the 9th annual DDN conference, 25th February 2016, Birmingham.
A major new report sheds light on the alcohol habits of the over-50s. Are they risking drinking themselves into an early grave?
Harry Shapiro has launched a new drug information service with his former DrugScope colleague, Jackie Buckle. He tells us more
Education and training are often discarded when substance use takes over. Richard Johnson describes how ANA’s new programme is helping clients to reconnect
Kit Caless examines some of the issues behind the rush to outlaw new psychoactive substances (NPS)
Helping families through the guilt and anger of losing a loved one can be gruelling for practitioners. Esther Harries looks at how to be prepared
Stigma, misunderstanding and a lack of communication cloud our policy and practice on drugs, said speakers at HIT Hot Topics.
There wasn’t very much to celebrate in 2015, a year that saw both England and Scotland record their highest ever number of drug-related fatalities, while a surprise outright Conservative election win heralded yet more belt-tightening and austerity…
Unlike in England, drug deaths in Wales have been falling since 2010 – a result that can be traced to Welsh public health policy and harm reduction practice, say Josie Smith and Chris Emmerson
In a climate of austerity the new drug strategy must grow from our successes, says Paul Hayes on behalf of Collective Voice
Are we doing enough to protect children from their parents’ drug and alcohol use? At a recent safeguarding conference there was plenty of cause for concern
How can we tackle child safeguarding without risking disengagement? DDN hears a cautionary perspective from public health nurses.
Forcing stable people off their heroin scripts and into chaos is evidence of a British drug treatment system in terminal decline, says Erin O’Mara
Phoenix Future’s new report Building recovery friendly communities makes the case for specialist recovery housing as a pathway to long-term recovery. Karen Biggs tells DDN why this is an opportunity not to be missed
Be part of the the debate with the latest letters and comment
At a VolteFace event in London, journalist Philippa Budgen asked panelists: ‘How can we have meaningful prison reform with drug policies that aren’t working? What would be your messages for justice secretary Michael Gove?’
Paul Hayes is determinedly upbeat in the aftermath of Brexit
‘People, Places and Things is an excellent look inside the world of a 12-step-style rehab…’
The work can be demanding and draining – so why do it? Keith Stevenson shares the highs and lows of working at the Mulberry Community Project
New government funding of £10m has just been awarded to drug and alcohol services ‘committed towards improving recovery outcomes’ across England – capital funding that was distributed by PHE via local authorities.
The launch of Collective Voice saw the group emphasising their commitment to service users.
Losing her daughter to an accidental overdose made Anne-Marie Cockburn determined to campaign for the realistic drugs education that could have saved Martha. She spoke powerfully to a recent meeting of the Drugs, Alcohol and Justice Parliamentary Group
‘ I came to a DDN conference and thought, “I could do that”,’ Red Rose Recovery CEO Peter Yarwood told the conference’s closing session. ‘So I took that inspiration back to Lancashire and found people who believed in me.’
Chris Rintoul reports positive results from a Northern Ireland naloxone programme
A craving is the salesperson we can choose to ignore, says Chris Robin
The pressure to collect data from new clients should not replace essential rapport, says Shahroo Izadi
Literacy issues can be a barrier to participant engagement and successful outcomes in substance misuse treatment programmes. Richard Homer explores the reasons why
As Spitalfields Crypt Trust (SCT) celebrates 50 years of helping people in recovery, CEO Graham Marshall looks back at the changing landscape of addiction and recovery in East London
‘Difficult though the challenge of the emergence of new substances is proving, and whether or not you agree with the recent legislation, I feel that an opportunity has been missed to rename these substances…’ – Peter Young, Hampshire
The news, and the skews, in the national media…
Catch up on your favourite columnists
Legalisation, decriminalisation, drug law reform – what do we mean, asks George Allan
Nicole Ridgwell of Ridouts answers your legal questions
On the importance of keeping up the momentum…
DDN brings you thoughts and advice from our insider. Read here.
Dr Steve Brinksman calls for kindness and compassion in palliative care
Release solicitor Kirstie Douse answers your legal questions. Read here.
Adfam’s carol concert reminder. Read here.
Russell Webster looks at the inventive business of getting drugs into prison
Employability support should be an important part of tackling reoffending rates, says Amar Lodhia. Read here
When do specialist drug and alcohol services play a part in the wider public health agenda, asks Marcus Roberts.
Personal stories and news from the DDN community
Making a positive change to someone’s life has been a motivating force for Ishbel Straker, national head of nursing for substance misuse and public health at Turning Point
With just a few weeks left to enter the Recovery Street Film Festival, last year’s winner Ceri Walker explains how she was inspired to make her film
Chris Ford says goodbye to a passionate and inspirational colleague
James Dickinson shares the story of Bert, the unofficial head of treatment at Chandos House.
John Lowes takes us with him on a very personal journey.
A partnership between Blenheim and Club Soda aims to change drinking habits
Nicky Goulder talks about how an acting workshop is supporting vulnerable women in east London
If you’ve approached a familiar area of practice differently, or started a new initiative in your area, we want to hear about it – email firstname.lastname@example.org
Cry for help
Painkiller addiction is a growing issue. In the first of a three-part series, DDN asks, are we responding?
August 18, 2016
Scotland has once again recorded its highest ever number of drug-related deaths, at 706 – almost two per day. The 2015 figures are 15 per cent … [Read More...]
July 8, 2016
The UK’s public health bodies have added their voices to the call for decriminalisation. Reports advocating the decriminalisation of drugs … [Read More...]