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Trends in hepatitis C infection among recent initiates to drug injecting in England between 2004 (when a national action plan was launched) and 2008 indicate the importance of reinvigorating and improving the coverage of harm reduction measures such as needle exchange and substitute prescribing.
Study published by UK government estimates that every £1 spent on specialist substance misuse treatment for under-18s in Britain averts social costs totalling £4.66–£8.38.
The safer injecting facility in Vancouver prevented overdose deaths but only in areas nearest the service, suggesting that often several facilities will be needed to make a city-wide impact.
Is regular counselling really essential to the effectiveness of methadone maintenance treatment, or are treatment entry and the power of high-dose methadone enough in themselves for many patients? At least in the first four months, this US study suggests the latter.
DOCUMENT 2011 HTM file
Prevention and control of infectious diseases among people who inject drugs
European Union drug misuse and disease control agencies have come together to offer guidance on how to prevent injection-related disease spread in Europe. Towards the top of the list are widespread injecting equipment supply and heroin substitute prescribing, but neither chime well with the UK's recovery-focused addiction policies.
DOCUMENT 2011 HTM file
European drug prevention quality standards: a manual for prevention professionals
These first European standards on delivering high quality drug prevention may be assumed to be dry and technical, but could transform prevention practice if implemented, leading to fewer ineffective activities and an increased focus on approaches and interventions with realistic and achievable objectives.
Family interventions were at the heart of the UK government’s ambition to ‘turn round’ the lives of 120,000 troubled families in England. In respect of drink and drug problems, substantial remission was seen, but the featured study could not show whether this was due to the interventions, and a report on a successor programme found no significant impacts.
REVIEW 2011 HTM file
Behavioral couples therapy for substance abusers: where do we go from here?
Problem drinkers and drug users in a persisting if distressed relationship with a partner do better when the focus is at least partly shifted from the patient to working with the couple to foster sobriety-encouraging interactions. Benefits for patients and the broader society can be remarkable.
From New York, a success story of the reversal of a serious epidemic of HIV among injectors, with mass needle exchange in the starring role. It adds weight to studies which collectively indicate that multi-strand approaches featuring high-coverage syringe provision can curb the spread of HIV.
DOCUMENT 2010 HTM file
The Patel report: Reducing drug-related crime and rehabilitating offenders
Investigation and recommendations from an expert group on drug treatment and interventions for people in prison in England calls for a clear focus on recovery and for the commissioning and coordination measures needed to improve outcomes without extra resources.
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