Drugs news from UK

Here are this months top drug stories in the UK news 

BBC news

25/08/10 Drugs deaths up by 67% in Wales in three years

24/8/10 Don’t label heroin users as ‘junkies’ – Drug Commission

20/8/10 Drugscope’s Martin Barnes criticises benefit plans

20/8/10 Drug addict benefit withdrawal considered

16/8/10 Top doctor Sir Ian Gilmore calls for drugs law review

Mephedrone ban tries to cover all variations

Under increasing pressure from the media, the UK government has introduced an amnesty for all mephedrone suppliers of existing stock and made the drug a class B substance.

The legislation attempts to cover all possible chemical variations and compound structures, which could have allowed a legal way round the ban. Mephedrone is now an illegal substance to possess, supply or import in the UK. Standard class B legal penalties apply upon charges brought by the police.

How Mephedrone will be treated and classified by Europe and the rest of the world remains unclear. It remains a legal chemical in many countries.

There is still no instant drug test for mephedrone available, making its use, problematic to detect or monitor.

Drug Testing Companies in the UK

The number of drug testing companies in the UK has fallen over the last 2 year as the industry consolidates. The cost of most onsite diagnostic tests has risen by almost 20% due in part to the weakness of sterling and rising import costs and transport costs. In 2008 there were 17 drug test companies active in the UK market. By 2010 this had fallen to 13, with only 9 reported to be operating in profit and sustainably.

Mike Garside, Director of Access Diagnostic Tests UK Ltd, who operate www.ukdrugtesting.co.uk & www.drug-testing-kit.co.uk  comments : “while we have seen real growth in the drug testing sector, with more and more medium and small companies initiating drug and alcohol testing, the choice of UK suppliers has decreased, and the number of drug test manufacturers has decreased even further, so most of the branded drug testing products on offer are coming out of the same production lines. We are also starting to see further inflationary pressure in China, with both raw material and wage price increases putting pressure on factory prices. Without a strong Pound I would expect to see further price increases throughout 2010”

Internet drug treatment programmes rising.

New research from the EMCDDA has highlighted the growth in internet drug treatment programmes. Demand for drug treatment is growing in the EU with service provision being least available in remote rural areas.

While the report highlighted the problems of non contact treatment, it is encouraged by certain models undergoing trials which could offer a cost effective treatment route for some users.

The report concluded much greater evidential research is needed and probably some regulation.

Drug & Alcohol testing at work on the increase

Just read this article in Construction News

Rok’s employees and supply chain will face drug and alcohol tests from this autumn.

The group – which turned over more than £1 billion last year and has 60 offices across the UK – told Construction News it plans to roll out a new drug and alcohol policy which will see all of its workers face an initial round of testing, followed by sustained random checks.

Rok, which in March announced it had a secured future pipeline of work some £2.7 billion, said it wanted to weed out drug and alcohol abusers in a bid to boost site safety across the company.

Head of health and safety Shaun Davis said while the policy had not yet been finalised, it was expected to include pre-employment, random and post-incident testing. Tests could also be carried out if suspicions were raised over any specific individuals.

Click here to read the full article online at Construction News

Click here for more on info and drug and alcohol testing

Are Drug test fails in prisons coming down ?

Just read this interesting bit of news from 20/4/09 online at bbc online:

Conditions at a prison are improving with a drop in the number of inmates failing drugs test, a government report says.

Featherstone Prison near Wolverhampton is now a high performing prison, the Chief Inspector of Prisons said.

The number of drug test failures is down from between 30-35% per month in 2007 to 4%, the prison said.

The prison has recently introduced NVQs in recycling and Rugby Football Coaching qualifications.

The prison was inspected in October last year.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/8008999.stm

Oraline IV Multi Drug Saliva Drug Screen

The Oraline IV saliva drug test has been launched by Access Diagnostic Tests UK Ltd into the UK market for sales as a professional medical diagnostic screen for drugs of abuse.

Available in professional cartons of 25 test kits, Oraline IV saliva drug test offers market leading sensitivity for Cannabis THC detection at just 4ng/ml

Oraline IV incorporates a patented saliva collection spoon for true single step testing, although the device can also be used with cup collected saliva samples

Oraline IV multi drug saliva drug screen provides on-site rapid-results for

Marijuana 4ng detection for 14-24hrs
Cocaine 25ng detection for 24-48hrs
Opiates 2ng detection for 7-21hrs
Methamphetamines 3.75ng detection for 72hrs

The Oraline IV drug test is CE marked and FDA approved for clinical IVDD use worldwide.

Oral fluid saliva multi drug saliva drug testing kits 

An Observer poll shows rising pressure for regular testing of police, doctors, teachers and drivers for drugs

Just read this article from Guradian online about public opinion to drug testing for certain occupations. Here is an extract below

Britons have become more hardline in their attitudes towards drugs and the people who use them, a major poll commissioned by The Observer has revealed.

The toughening in public opinion includes an overwhelming desire for key workers, such as police officers, teachers and doctors, to face regular drug testing.

According to the survey, which was carried out by ICM research and is reported fully in Drugs Uncovered magazine, free with today’s Observer, the proportion of people who think that drug laws are too liberal has risen from a quarter in 2002 to 32 per cent. Meanwhile, those who believe that legislation is not liberal enough has fallen from 30 to 18 per cent and support for decriminalising certain drugs has dropped from 38 to 27 per cent.

Similarly, 85 per cent now feel that police officers should undergo routine testing to see if they have been using illicit substances compared with 61 per cent six years ago, when The Observer last conducted an in-depth poll on drugs. Just 46 per cent believed teachers should face testing then; now 68 per cent do. The same trend emerged for pilots, drivers, doctors and nurses.

Click here to read the full story

Drug Testing News from around the world

In September 2008 the Japanese world of sumo wrestling was rocked by a drugs scandal.

Two Russian wrestlers tested positive for marijuana use and another was arrested on suspicion of possessing the drug.

The wrestler who was arrested has already been banned for life.

The world of sumo is very conservative and wrestlers are held to the highest moral standards.

Click here to read the full story