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1CN QU: Risk Of Suicide Rises With Cocaine Use, Study FindsSat, 27 Dec 2014
Source:Montreal Gazette (CN QU) Author:Magder, Jason Area:Quebec Lines:Excerpt Added:12/28/2014

Drug Causes Mood Swings, Impulsive Behaviour, Montreal Research Shows

Users of cocaine and amphetamines are twice as likely to attempt suicide than other people who inject drugs, a new study from the Universite de Montreal has found.

The study, published in the Nov. 26 issue of the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence, followed the users of injectable drugs over a seven-year period. The users answered questionnaires twice a year. The study found that users of cocaine and amphetamines were roughly twice as likely to attempt suicide than users of opiates, sedative-hypnotics, cannabis and alcohol.

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2CN ON: While MDs Question If Medical Marijuana Is The Right PrescriptionSat, 20 Dec 2014
Source:Windsor Star (CN ON) Author:Schmidt, Doug Area:Ontario Lines:Excerpt Added:12/24/2014


Dr. Tony Hammer treats drug addicts and people seeking pain relief - the latter sometimes feeding the former - but don't expect him to jump aboard the medical marijuana bandwagon.

"I am utterly incapable of distinguishing between those who need it and those who enjoy it," said Hammer. He's convinced most of the tens of thousands of Canadians prescribed medical marijuana are instead using it "recreationally."

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3 US MD: PUB LTE: Methadone Is the Most Effective Therapy forTue, 23 Dec 2014
Source:Baltimore Sun (MD) Author:Greenblatt, Aaron D. Area:Maryland Lines:56 Added:12/23/2014

As a physician working on the front lines of addiction treatment and research in Baltimore, I read Lisa Lowe's recent op-ed with great interest but also with some perplexity ("Addiction services needed more than statistics," Dec. 18).

I share Ms. Lowe's frustration with the difficulty that many patients and families - especially those with private insurance - have accessing affordable addiction treatment and transitional housing.

However, despite her impassioned advocacy for "evidence-based best-practice therapies," Ms. Lowe's piece contains misleading and frankly false information about effective addiction treatments.

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4 US NJ: Column: Ibogaine Is the Cure for Addiction and IsThu, 18 Dec 2014
Source:Trentonian, The (NJ) Author:Forchion, Edward Area:New Jersey Lines:130 Added:12/18/2014

You can read this and say I'm just a dumb stoner and a drug addict, but to be clear I'm far from stupid and I'm not addicted to anything. I don't do drugs; I only smoke "cannabis," which isn't addictive. I've known of the cure for addiction (ibogaine) since July 4, 1998, when I first met Dana Beal of the "cures-not-wars" organization at a legalize marijuana protest in Washington D.C. I admit when I first heard Dana rail on and on about ibogaine I was skeptical. My thoughts were, if there really were a cure for addictions it would be used empathetically across America to save lives. Over the years I learned differently.

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5 CN BC: Local HeroinSat, 06 Dec 2014
Source:Economist, The (UK)          Area:British Columbia Lines:63 Added:12/09/2014

Legal Narcotics In A Liberal City

THE people queuing up at the Providence Crosstown Clinic are pioneers of a sort. They are heroin addicts whose habits have resisted conventional treatment. They hope to become the first in North America to get their fixes legally as part of a treatment programme rather than just for a clinical trial. "It's heroin that you know is good," says one addict waiting outside, who aspires to join the queue.

Some European countries, including Germany and Switzerland, prescribe heroin for the most severe cases of addiction. Patients taking heroin are less likely to use illicit drugs and drop out of treatment than those who use methadone, a substitute. Vancouver's eagerness to follow is not surprising. It has long had Canada's most liberal drug policies, and it has a big problem. Addicts congregate in Downtown Eastside, two derelict blocks right next to tourist attractions and the financial district. In the late 1990s the city had the highest rate of HIV infection outside sub-Saharan Africa.

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6 US: Young Opiate Addicts Do Better In RehabTue, 02 Dec 2014
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Kennedy, Madeline Area:United States Lines:94 Added:12/04/2014

Young adults addicted to opiates like oxycodone and heroin may have the best chance at long-term abstinence in residential treatment - often known as rehab - programs, according to a recent study.

"Given evidence that outpatient treatment for opioid dependence in young adults is not as effective as it is in older adults, we need alternatives to protect this vulnerable population," said lead author Dr. Zev Schuman-Olivier.

According to the U.S. National Institutes of Health, the most commonly abused opiate drugs are heroin and methadone, although the opiate painkillers morphine and oxycodone (Oxycontin) are also widely misused.

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7 UK: Column: The Lessons Of Alex Norton's Heroin AdmissionMon, 01 Dec 2014
Source:Herald, The (Glasgow, UK) Author:Craven, Shona Area:United Kingdom Lines:98 Added:12/03/2014

Drug-use confessions by those in the public eye have a lot of power to shape perceptions, writes SHONA CRAVEN

While most of us are well aware of how addictions shatter families and blight communities, the addict - particularly the heroin addict - remains an unfathomable "other".

And while great efforts have been made in recent years to change public perceptions, that label retains an unmistakable moral, rather than medical, dimension.

Any pity for a drug user with a wretched life is paired with a confidence that such a life is the product of choices we ourselves would never make.

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8 US OH: Sen. Brown Touts Bill To Help Heroin AddictsMon, 01 Dec 2014
Source:Blade, The (Toledo, OH) Author:Troy, Tom Area:Ohio Lines:57 Added:12/02/2014

Would Make It Easier to Give Anti-Addiction Medication to Help Users

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D., Ohio) was in Toledo today to generate support for a bill he's co-sponsoring that would make it easier to give anti-addiction medication to help heroin users break their heroin habit.

The bill, still awaiting action in the Senate, would increase the number of patients who would be able to get methadone medication to help them break their drug habits in response to demand from opiate abuse.

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9CN BC: Memories Of The Psychedelic WonderlandSat, 29 Nov 2014
Source:Vancouver Sun (CN BC) Author:Mackie, John Area:British Columbia Lines:Excerpt Added:11/30/2014

Long-Lost Promoter Of Vancouver's First Hippie Club Returns With Stories, And Some Amazing Posters

The saying goes that if you can remember the '60s, you weren't really there.

Jerry Kruz knows this all too well. At 66, his memory of the parties, concerts and happenings he took part in during the hippie era are a bit hazy.

But a marvellous thing happens when he looks back at his collection of old psychedelic concert posters. The memories of the shows come floating back, like a contact high.

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10CN BC: Hospital Visits Due To Substance Abuse Up 63 Per CentTue, 25 Nov 2014
Source:Vancouver Sun (CN BC) Author:Shore, Randy Area:British Columbia Lines:Excerpt Added:11/28/2014

Doctor blames increasingly easy access to alcohol, which accounts for 10 times more medical costs than all other drugs combined

Hospital visits attributed to alcohol and drug abuse increased by 63 per cent in the Greater Vancouver area over just four years ending in 2013, and visits to St. Paul's Hospital in downtown Vancouver for substance abuse increased by a whopping 89 per cent over the same period, according to emergency room data.

And despite dire headlines about opioid addiction and IV drug use, alcohol is driving most of the increase.

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11 CN BC: Prescription Heroin To Hit Vancouver Streets In A First ForThu, 27 Nov 2014
Source:Georgia Straight, The (CN BC) Author:Lupick, Travis Area:British Columbia Lines:137 Added:11/28/2014

STARTING THE WEEK of November 23, doctors will administer prescription heroin to a select group of patients in Vancouver.

It will be the first time that heroin, or diacetylmorphine, is given to patients anywhere in North America outside of an academic study.

"For this group, the addiction is so severe that no other treatment has been effective," said David Byres, vice president of acute clinical programs at Providence Health Care. "The goal is stabilization."

The harm-reduction program will be run out of Providence Crosstown Clinic in the Downtown Eastside. In a telephone interview, Byres emphasized that heroin-assisted treatment is only recommended as an appropriate intervention for individuals who have repeatedly failed with traditional therapies such as methadone.

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12 CN BC: Heroin Addicts Authorized To Get DrugSat, 22 Nov 2014
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Woo, Andrea Area:British Columbia Lines:96 Added:11/24/2014

North American first comes after more than a year of battles between doctors and federal Health Minister

In a North American first, heroin addicts in Vancouver will soon receive prescription heroin outside of a clinical trial.

Doctors at the Providence Crosstown Clinic received shipment of the drug this week for 26 former trial participants and will begin administering the drugs next week. In all, 120 severely addicted people have received authorization from Health Canada to receive the drugs; the rest are expected to get them soon.

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13 US MI: Face Time: Dimitri Mugianis on Speed-Balling, IbogaineWed, 19 Nov 2014
Source:Metro Times (Detroit, MI) Author:Panne, Valerie Vande Area:Michigan Lines:293 Added:11/20/2014

In the underground world of heroin, there is a legend of an African root called iboga, or ibogaine, that can cure addiction. Those in the depths of heroin use, often as a last resort, seek out the root, which can be dangerous to use. Some go to Mexico or to Europe to take it, as it is illegal here in the United States. It can be an expensive trip for the user, and often one made in a moment of final desperation.

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14 US MD: OPED: Md. Must Address Heroin DeathsMon, 10 Nov 2014
Source:Baltimore Sun (MD) Author:Schwartz, Robert P. Area:Maryland Lines:104 Added:11/11/2014

Once largely relegated to Baltimore City, heroin use and its related adverse consequences are spreading to every part of the state, and an increasing number of Maryland's citizens are dying of heroin overdoses. This shift reflects national trends showing a 74 percent increase in heroin use from 2009 to 2012 and a doubling of heroin overdose rates in 28 states sampled by the Centers for Disease Control. After a sharp reduction in heroin overdose deaths from 2007 to 2010, Maryland heroin deaths have risen to mirror these increases, reaching 464 deaths in 2013. In Baltimore City, conversely, the number of heroin overdose deaths had declined from its peak in 1999 to a low of 76 in 2011 and has not risen as sharply as it has in other parts of the state.

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15 US MD: PUB LTE: Put Drug Treatment Where the Need Is GreatestMon, 27 Oct 2014
Source:Baltimore Sun (MD) Author:McNeely, Joseph B. Area:Maryland Lines:45 Added:10/27/2014

The Central Baltimore Partnership, a federation of more than 60 organizations dedicated to the renaissance of Central Baltimore, commends Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake for forming a task force that will spend the next nine months studying heroin and substance abuse in Baltimore while developing new ideas about how the city can better coordinate treatment options ("Mayor appoints task force to study heroin, substance abuse," Oct. 14).

For the past year and a half, a CBP task force has been considering similar issues in the Central Baltimore area. Known as the Saturation of Metropolitan Service Agencies (SMSA) task force, it was formed to address the high concentration of methadone clinics, drug treatment facilities and other social services providers located in the neighborhoods of Old Goucher, Charles North and Charles Village.

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16 Canada: Health Canada's Prescription Heroin Ban Issued on Thin GroundThu, 09 Oct 2014
Source:Georgia Straight, The (CN BC) Author:Lupick, Travis Area:Canada Lines:109 Added:10/13/2014

IN OCTOBER 2013, Health Canada made a regulation change that banned B.C. doctors from prescribing heroin to a small group of addicts.

The federal department did that after consulting only one scientific report on the matter, according to documents released in response to a freedom-of-information request. Furthermore, that one expert's opinion is that prescription heroin, or diacetylmorphine, should remain an available treatment option.

The document was prepared for Health Canada by Dr. Michael Lester, an expert in opioid-dependence treatment and an assistant professor at the University of Toronto. It describes prescription heroin as a "pragmatic approach for people who do not significantly reduce their intravenous diacetylmorphine use despite an adequate trial of Methadone Maintenance".

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17CN BC: Nanaimo Residents Band Together To Take Back LaneSun, 21 Sep 2014
Source:Victoria Times-Colonist (CN BC) Author:Hinks, Aaron Area:British Columbia Lines:Excerpt Added:09/22/2014

Nanaimo residents living near Wisteria Lane showed city staff and local politicians the progress that has been done to deter drug addicts and prostitutes from using the alleyway as a safe haven.

The alley, which was given its name by the local homeowners, runs immediately west of the 100-block of Nicol Street behind a row of businesses and homes.

After collecting more than 70 dirty needles and watching drug deals on a near daily basis, frustrated residents got together in July to find a solution to the growing problem.

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18 CN ON: Rehab Programs Feel The CrunchThu, 18 Sep 2014
Source:Ottawa South News (CN ON) Author:Dodge, Brier Area:Ontario Lines:357 Added:09/22/2014

Jail Break: A four-part series about recidivism in Ontario

Canada's jails are bursting at the seams. Federal and provincial correctional facilities are struggling to meet the rising intake of inmates, the result of federal government tough-on-crime legislation. A Metroland East special report shows rehabilitation and treatment programs have taken a backseat to the push for prison expansion. In the first of a four-part series, we look at how prisoners are struggling to find employment and addiction-treatment support.

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19 US CO: Column: Opioids, Cannabis, Scientists and Money, LotsThu, 11 Sep 2014
Source:Boulder Weekly (CO) Author:Rucker, Leland Area:Colorado Lines:120 Added:09/11/2014

The numbers are compelling. As Americans seek more relief from pain and companies come up with ever-stronger drugs to ease discomfort, so do mortality rates rise for the growing number of patients who use opioid pain relievers. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 46 people a day die from opioid overdoses. More people - - 16,000 or so - die from opioid misuse than from any illegal drugs in any given year.

Opioids, psychoactive chemicals that resemble morphine or other opiates in their pharmacological effects, are among the oldest medicines mankind has used.

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20 Mexico: Decriminalize, Regulate Heroin, Cocaine, CommissionTue, 09 Sep 2014
Source:Wall Street Journal (US) Author:Cordoba, Jose De Area:Mexico Lines:114 Added:09/11/2014

Report Recommends Treating Drug Abuse as Public-Health Problem

MEXICO CITY--A commission composed mostly of former world leaders will recommend Tuesday that governments move beyond legalizing marijuana and decriminalize and regulate the use of most other illegal drugs, including heroin and cocaine.

The international drug-control system is broken, says a report to be released Tuesday in New York by the Global Commission on Drug Policy. Governments should be allowed wide latitude to experiment with the regulation of drugs, except for the most lethal, says the commission, whose 21 members include former U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker, former U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz, and former presidents such as Brazil's Fernando Henrique Cardoso, Mexico's Ernesto Zedillo and Colombia's Cesar Gaviria.

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