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17 May 2019

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MAT access disproportionate to need among African Americans
White drug users addicted to heroin, fentanyl and other opioids have had near exclusive access to buprenorphine, a drug that curbs the craving for opioids and reduces the chance of a fatal overdose. That's according to a study out Wednesday from the University of Michigan. It appears in JAMA Psychiatry.
Researchers reviewed two national surveys of physician-reported prescriptions. Between 2012 and 2015, as overdose deaths surged in many states, so did the number of visits during which a doctor or nurse practitioner prescribed buprenorphine, often referred to by its brand name, Suboxone. The researchers assessed 13.4 million medical encounters involving the drug but found no increase in prescriptions written for African Americans and other minorities.
"White populations are almost 35 times as likely to have a buprenorphine-related visit than black Americans," says Dr. Pooja Lagisetty, an assistant professor of medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School and the study's corresponding author. Read more

In Brazil, Bolsonaro cuts harm reduction, escalates drug war


Largely unreported in English-language news media, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has pulled the plug on government support for harm reduction, instead calling for the promotion of abstinence and a crackdown on people who use and sell drugs.
On April 11, Bolsonaro signed a revised National Drug Policy (PNAD) in which all mentions of harm reduction were removed, while recommendations for abstinence-only programs, which were once sparsely-present, are now forefronted. The Policy guides the operations of two ministerial secretariats, one for Care and Prevention of Drugs and the other for Drug Policy.
Read more
Meth overdose deaths in U.S. quadruple over 6-year span

Methamphetamine is still a widely used drug in many parts of the United States, and across the country, overdose deaths involving meth have more than quadrupled over a six-year period.

In Oregon, health authorities report that meth is now the leading cause of drug-related deaths in the state. Dr. 
Andy Mendenhall, chief medical officer for Central City Concern in Portland, Oregon, says meth use has a long history in Oregon. Read more
Scaling up HIV prevention and treatment in the Russian Federation

WHO and the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation have intensified their collaboration in the field of HIV prevention and treatment. This scale-up was embodied in 2 recent events: a workshop aimed at clinicians involved in HIV treatment and care, and the first meeting of the Thematic Working Group on HIV Treatment and Care on 25–27 March 2019 in St Petersburg.
Read more
China unlikely to curb fentanyl exports in the short term

Strict policies traditionally embraced by Asian nations to discourage illicit drug use are beginning to change, with a few nations adopting alternative approaches while other nations are taking an even harder line against drugs, according to a new RAND Corporation report.

Thailand is on the forefront of Southeast Asian nations that are reconsidering longstanding policies, moving to adopt greater harm reduction, approving the use of medical cannabis and easing restrictions on the traditional use of the substance kratom.
Read more

Recently at the 62nd Session of the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs, a special event, Evidence-based Treatment and Therapeutic Communities as an Integral Part of the Health System, was organized by the Governments of Greece and Spain, the Therapy Center for Dependent Individuals-KETHEA, Association Proyecto Hombre, the World Federation of Therapeutic Communities, and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Read more
Treatment Communities of America (TCA) will hold its Spring Meeting on 18-19 June, 2019 at the Liaison Capitol Hill in Washington, DC.

The European Federation of Therapeutic Communities (EFTC) will hold its 17th Annual Meeting from Sept. 19-20 in Thessaloniki, Greece. Find out more!

The Australasian Therapeutic Communities Association will hold its 2019 Conference from 29-31 October, 2019 in Adelaide, Australia. Find out more!
Consider this a place to post successes about your  program or challenges you face in your home country. If it's news to YOU, it's news us US. Your global neighbor may have resources to help! SUBMIT YOUR NEWS HERE.


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