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News GLASGOW CONSUMPTION ROOM MOVES A STEP CLOSER SMOKING STATS THE PROPORTION OF ADULTS IN ENGLAND WHO SMOKE HAS FALLEN to just over 15 per cent, according to a report from NHS Digital, ONS and PHE, down from just below 20 per cent at the start of the decade. The largest fall – from 26 per cent to 19 per cent – was among 18-24 year olds. The number of hospital admissions attributable to smoking has increased, however, from 458,000 in 2005-06 to 474,000 in 2015-16, and 16 per cent of all deaths in England in 2015 were estimated to be attributable to smoking. ASH said that while the drop in smoking rates was ‘great news’, smoking remained the leading cause of preventable death. ‘One in two lifetime smokers will die from smoking-related disease, so a fall in smoking rates of this scale will save 4 | drinkanddrugsnews | July/August 2017 CHANGING TIMES Millar. ‘Our aim is to provide a route to recovery for a group of people often disengaged from support services.’ Public injecting placed a ‘considerable’ financial burden on the health, social care and criminal justice systems, she added. ‘Existing research suggests the average spend on health, addictions, housing and criminal justice service for people in Glasgow with complex needs ranges from £1,120 and £3,069 per individual per month. These proposals are backed SuSAnne MillAr by evidence indicating safer drug consumption facilities not only improve health outcomes for people who inject drugs, but are also highly cost effective and contribute to savings for health and social care services.’ Meanwhile, the Scottish Drugs Forum has launched the final report of its expert working group on older people with drug problems. Not only are this population not engaged with treatment and at high risk of fatal overdose, they will ‘increasingly become the norm’ in services, says Older people with drug problems in Scotland: addressing the needs of an aging population. SDF document at www.sdf.org.uk A REPORT PRESENTED TO THE GLASGOW CITY INTEGRATION JOINT BOARD has identified a site for what could be the UK’s first drug consumption room. The board officially approved the development of a business case for the facility late last year (DDN, November 2016, page 4) and an engagement process will now be carried out with the local community. The proposed city-centre facility near the River Clyde would also offer heroin-assisted treatment alongside health and social care advice, peer support and treatment referrals. Last year’s draft business case argued that the combined consumption room and heroin- assisted treatment could help reduce drug-related deaths and blood-borne virus transmission, as well as public injecting and drug-related offending. It could also improve service engagement for people with complex needs and reduce the burden on other health services. The new report estimates the combined cost of the con sumption room and heroin-assisted treatment at just over £2.3m per year, to be part-funded by redirecting existing resources of just under £900,000. The remaining £1.4m would be met by ‘contingency funding for a period of no more than three years’, says NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde. The lifetime cost to the health service of Glasgow’s newly diagnosed HIV cases among drug users since 2015 is estimated at almost £30m, while a 2009 Scottish Government research paper estimated the ‘total economic and social costs attributable to illegal drug users’ in Scotland at around £3.5bn. Heroin-assisted treatment could potentially save almost £950,000 per year for every 30 people who access it, says the health board, with the treatment available only to adult heroin-dependent patients ‘with previous unsuccessful treatment episodes’. ‘The need for a safer consumption facility is about improving the health of those involved in public injecting,’ said chief officer for strategy, planning and commissioning at Glasgow City Community Health Partnership, Susanne required to support people in reducing their alcohol consumption.’ ‘A safer con sump tion facility is about improving health.’ many thousands of lives in years to come,’ said chief executive Deborah Arnott. Statistics on smoking, England 2017 at www.gov.uk A&E OVERSIGHT NINE OUT OF TEN A&E DEPARTMENTS ARE FAILING to identify young people with alcohol problems, according to research by the University of Surrey. A survey of nearly 150 departments found that young people were not routinely asked about their alcohol consumption or screened to identify those needing help. ‘Ending up in A&E is often a wake-up call for people and forces them to assess their alcohol consumption,’ said lead author Dr Robert Patton. ‘However this is not always the case and sometimes involvement from a health care professional is what is ABOUT A QUARTER OF A BILLION PEOPLE USED DRUGS IN 2015, according to UNODC’s World drug report 2017, with around 29.5m engage