Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Program report: Overdose response in Yunnan, China

By: Nicholas Bartlett, Deming Xin, Hong Zhang, Bamian Huang

his month, an article that we researched and wrote last year, "A Qualitative Evaluation of a Peer-Implemented Overdose Response Pilot Project in Gejiu, China," has become available online in the International Journal of Drug Policy. The article reports on the experiences from Huyangshu, a harm reduction NGO based in Yunnan that has been offering naloxone in China through an emergency overdose response hotline service since 2008.

We conducted qualitative interviews with 30 clients, including 15 individuals who received naloxone injections to reverse an overdose and 15 individuals who called the hotline in response to the overdose of a peer. Clients pointed to a number of local structural shifts, including the aging of the opiate using population and drug mixing practices, that contribute to the city’s overdose toll. The article offers reflections on the program's implementation to date and considerations about how to improve in the future.

Monday, June 6, 2011

PubMed June 2011 Update

1) Mortality risk in a cohort of subjects reported by authorities for cannabis possession for personal use. Results of a longitudinal study.
Pavarin RM, Berardi D.
Epidemiol Prev
. 2011 Mar-Apr;35(2):89-93.
Comments: A database-linkage study of people arrested for marijuana possession in Bologna from 1990-2004. I'm unable to access the full article, but the abstract reports a standardized mortality ratio (sort of like an odds ratio) for those who ultimately sought public drug treatment of 15 and those who didn't seek public treatment of 2. Overdose was a leading cause of death for both groups.

Sudden Bilateral Sensorineural Hearing Loss following Polysubstance Narcotic Overdose.
Schweitzer VG, Darrat I, Stach BA, Gray E.
J Am Acad Audiol
. 2011 Apr;22(4):208-14.
Comments: A report of hearing loss after a poly-drug binge (heroin, benzos, alcohol, and crack). Again, I'm unable to access the full article. However, this has been reported before in relation to some opioids and the mechanism remains unclear.