NICE says to restrict antibiotics in COPD

NICE says to restrict antibiotics in COPD

July 13 2018 Draft guidance is calling for health professionals to consider the risk of...

NICE updates guideline on rheumatoid arthritis

NICE updates guideline on rheumatoid arthritis

July 13 2018 NICE has issued a new version of its guideline on the management of rheumatoid...

Community pharmacy option for antihypertensives referral sees little increase in GP workload

Community pharmacy option for antihypertensives referral sees little increase in GP workload

July 11 2018 Community pharmacy referrals for hypertensive patients under the New Medicines...

CMO concludes cannabis products should move out of Schedule 1 classification

CMO concludes cannabis products should move out of Schedule 1 classification

July 9 2018 The Chief Medical Officer has recommended rescheduling cannabis-based products as...

GP partnership review invites views on how to reinvigorate the model

GP partnership review invites views on how to reinvigorate the model

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  • NICE says to restrict antibiotics in COPD

    NICE says to restrict antibiotics in COPD

    Friday, 13 July 2018 13:05
  • NICE updates guideline on rheumatoid arthritis

    NICE updates guideline on rheumatoid arthritis

    Friday, 13 July 2018 12:58
  • Community pharmacy option for antihypertensives referral sees little increase in GP workload

    Community pharmacy option for antihypertensives referral sees little increase in GP workload

    Wednesday, 11 July 2018 13:17
  • CMO concludes cannabis products should move out of Schedule 1 classification

    CMO concludes cannabis products should move out of Schedule 1 classification

    Monday, 09 July 2018 09:26
  • GP partnership review invites views on how to reinvigorate the model

    GP partnership review invites views on how to reinvigorate the model

    Friday, 06 July 2018 15:17

a pale yellow pills imageApril 12 2018

A crack-down on the diversion of Prescription Only Medicines onto the black market has seen illicit diazepam supply drop by more than 60%.

Annual figures issued by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency indicate that illicit trading is down:

  • 64% for diazepam 10mg;
  • 24% for nitrazepam;
  • 20% for top strength temazepam;
  • 14%. for zolpidem.

The MHRA data follows analysis of bulk orders of diverted medicines between January – May 2017 compared to January – May 2016. Its ongoing action is part of a programme to tackle diversion of legitimate POMs onto the criminal market, estimated to be worth £200 million. The MHRA’s enforcement team has 17 active investigations running, and 44 arrests have been made.

Multi-agency data on drug misuse and treatment services across the UK has also been published. It indicates that there was a substantial increase in the number of deaths registered in Scotland in 2016 that involved a benzodiazepine, rising from 191 deaths in 2015 to 426 in 2016. Benzodiazepines were associated with 406 deaths (16% of drug misuse deaths) registered in England and Wales in 2016.

The publication, ‘United Kingdom drug situation: Focal Point annual report 2017’, says that “overall drug prevalence in the general population is lower now than ten years ago, with cannabis being the main driver of that reduction; however, there has been little change in recent years.” The most recent estimate suggests crack cocaine usage increased 10% between 2011-12 and 2014-15.

In terms of addiction treatment:

  • there were 119,973 treatment presentations in the UK in 2016;
  • in England and Wales, there were 244,971 individuals recorded as being in drug treatment during 2016;
  • of all those in treatment in England and Wales, 138,422 were receiving prescribing treatment for opioid use.

Links:
MHRA announcement
‘United Kingdom drug situation: Focal Point annual report 2017’

 

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