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Substance-related bereavement

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A right to grieve How can support be improved for those bereaved through drug or alcohol-related deaths? A new set of guidelines offers advice for...

Bucking the trend

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Unlike in England, drug deaths in Wales have been falling since 2010 – a result that can be traced to Welsh public health...

Work, rest and play

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Addiction can be like swimming in shark- infested waters, but the recovery community are like people in a life raft holding out their hands,...

Health Check

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Public Health England chief executive Duncan Selbie describes how his organisation will work with the treatment sector, and promises that it will deliver ‘a...

REAL

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Lucy Seymour-Smith recently attended Aquarius’s service user conference as a new recruit to the alcohol charity’s team. Here she shares her first impressions of...

Healthy exchange

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DDN reports from the 2013 NNEF annual meeting in Bournemouth, which has become a keenly anticipated fixture for information and ideas.  Keeping harm reduction at the heart of...

Consensus politics

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As ever, this year’s meeting of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs proved a controversial affair. But despite failure to reach agreement on major issues...

Step by step

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Reintroducing people to stable employment and supporting them in the workplace are challen­ges that can be met with the right policies and culture –...

Cautious optimism

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Just because minimum pricing is on the back burner doesn’t mean it’s time to get despondent, hear delegates at Alcohol Concern’s annual conference ‘I think...

Treatment challenges of novel psychoactive substances

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Novel ideas Dima Abdulrahim talks about meeting the treatment challenges of novel psychoactive substances When it comes to managing substance misuse, there is an existing –...

tobacco plain packaging

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Plain talk Has tobacco plain packaging actually worked, asks Neil McKeganey Since announcing in 2012 that all tobacco products had to be packaged in plain form,...

Words for the wise

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Harry Shapiro has launched a new drug information service with his former DrugScope colleague, Jackie Buckle. He tells us more I am very pleased to announce...

City challenge

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We must learn to balance risk and freedom, says John Ashton in this month's Soapbox Most of us enjoy a love-hate relationship with our cities. We expect them...

Game on

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  With big business behind it, the hobby of computer gaming can turn into an unhealthy obsession. The addiction field is well placed to offer...

Family focused

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With 2013 marking the ten-year anniversary of Hidden harm, social care professionals gathered at the Adfam annual conference in London to reflect on the...

Step by step

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Step by step DDN reports from the second Adfam/DDN national conference for families and carers, which highlighted that, despite the progress in bringing family support to...

Quick, quick, slow…

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The latest moves on UK tobacco control are leading us a merr­y dance, says Neil McKeganey If you wanted to sum up the current advice...

Hidden faces

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To commemorate 30 years of supporting family members affected by loved ones’ drug and alcohol use, Adfam has launched a photo exhibition that celebrates...

Naloxone advocacy

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Let's get it out there The day saw repeated calls for life-saving, and cost-effective, naloxone to be made more widely available.  ‘The case for take-home naloxone...

Using life skills to aid recovery

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Natural remedy Kate Furey talks about how she used long-forgotten skills to get her life back on track My life started to spiral out of control...

Post-its from practice

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Sometimes the drug or alcohol problem isn’t obvious, says Dr Steve Brinksman  Marco rarely came to the surgery. He was a 44-year-old restaurant owner with...

A smack in the eye — Michael Linnell’s graphic harm reduction...

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Thirty years after Michael Linnell’s first graphic harm reduction campaigns burst onto the scene he recalls the outrage – and the results – that spurred him...

Nothing to declare

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Over the next six issues, Mark Dempster shares his uncompromising story of drug dealing and addiction. Growing up in Glasgow, the young Mark already...

Making recovery visible

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Thousands of people are gearing up for the fifth UK recovery walk in Birmingham on 22 September. Richard Maunders, chair of the planning group...

London calling

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  This year Blenheim, one of the UK's leading substance misuse charities, celebrates 50 years of delivering drug and alcohol treatment services across London. Blenheim...

Mind Over Matter

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Mat Southwell opened the 2014 Kaleidoscope Conference by linking harm reduction to mindfulness: ‘I find injecting ketamine helps me with mindfulness.’ The challenge he gave delegates...

My, how you’ve changed!

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What has the past decade meant to you and your role? What have been the most significant changes to the sector? And what will...

Local news from the substance misuse field

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DDN takes a look at local news from the substance misuse field across the country   Drugs worker to run London marathon A drugs worker based in Somerset...

The Naloxone Action Group

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Keep nagging on naloxone, says the naloxone action Group DDN listened to a lively lunchtime meeting of The Naloxone Action Group (NAG) at the RCGP...

Safeguarding conference 2015 – playing safe

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Are we doing enough to protect children from their parents’ drug and alcohol use? At a recent safeguarding conference there was plenty of cause...

Identity crisis

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UK governments agree that above all what they want out of treatment is ‘recovery’. Some of the most marginal, damaged and unconventional of people...

Shifting sands – 2012 according to DDN

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While the frequently hot-tempered harm reduction/abstinence debate that had characterised previous years finally appeared to be morphing into something more measured, 2012 still saw the sector...

Staying ahead of the inspector

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The Care Quality Commission is once again changing the way it inspects and rates substance misuse services. Make sure you are prepared, says David...

Changing profile

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A survey of needle exchange clients revealed the need for staff to keep up with the times, as James Langton explains.  As a supplier of...

A step too far?

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Stanton Peele challenges the received wisdom of the 12-step approach I recently received this email from a UK addictions worker: ‘Stanton, I was in a public...

Copenhagen cannabis

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The Danish government has just rejected proposals for ‘contained legalisation’ of cannabis, designed to limit drug misuse and remove profit from the criminal market,...

European Alcohol Conference

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Shake it up Speakers called for a fresh look at policy and new ways to engage drinkers at the European Alcohol Conference, held at the...

From little acorns…

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There’s still time to book... https://www.drinkanddrugsnews.com/conference ‘Don’t get mad, get organised’ said Si Parry from Morph at the first DDN national service user involvement conference in...

Medications in recovery

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An expert group convened by the NTA has made recommendations on reorientating drug dependence treatment to fit the recovery agenda. We invited the group's...

Services without frontiers

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Learning from peers across Europe has helped to enhance services at home, writes the team at Phoenix Futures Phoenix Futures has been involved over the...

Families First 2013

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The speakers and workshops at Families First 2013 gave delegates an opportunity to hear personal stories, network and exchange vital expertise. Supporting role Kate McKenzie speaks...

Too close to home

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As a well-travelled photographer, Andrew McNeill was used to seeing scenes of despair. But when he set out to photograph people affected by addiction...

New research on non-fatal overdoses

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A group of academics from the University of South Wales has published research on the prevalence of non-fatal overdoses among drug users in Wales Professor...

Richard McCann shares his story

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Against the odds The day’s final session saw an uplifting presentation from Richard McCann on the challenge of achieving things he’d never thought possible, and...

Smoking cessation

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Why don’t we take smoking cessation seriously, asks Dr Steve Brinksman Sajid looked quite bemused when I started talking to him about smoking cessation. ‘I...

Alcohol and drugs in the news

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Media savvy The news and views from the national media Laws against smoking have irreversibly shifted attitudes. The same drive is needed for alcohol consumption. The...

Different wavelengths

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The countdown to the Psychoactive Substances Act has been marked by controversy. Kit Caless shares debate from Addaction’s recent conference Last month, the Psychoactive Substances Act...

Family education- better than cure

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With a bill aiming to ensure compulsory drug and alcohol education in schools making its way through Parliament, a new Adfam briefing looks at...

Doing what works

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Katy Swaine Williams and José Aguiar discuss much-needed steps to reform women’s justice. Too many women are imprisoned unnecessarily in the UK, many on remand...

Is minimum pricing dead in the water?

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The ‘will they, won’t they?’ saga of minimum unit pricing for alcohol continues after the government announced it was shelving plans for its introduction....

How far have you come?

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 With recovery now the dominant model for alcohol and drug treatment, commissioning and research in both England and Scotland, there is a clear need...

The main man

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One of the key figures in the story of drug treatment in England, ex-NTA head Paul Hayes talks to David Gilliver for DDN’s tenth anniversary issue.  Paul...

New approaches to alcohol

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The management of alcohol as a consumer product, a health risk, and as part of our economy raises different challenges, to be tackled by...

Tread softly

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How can we tackle child safeguarding without risking disengagement? DDN hears a cautionary perspective from public health nurses. This focus on child protection is a...

A helping hand

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Phoenix Futures has launched the Griffiths Edwards Fund to champion his belief that ‘no one size fits all’  Access to drug treatment saves lives, gives...

Adapt and thrive

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Drugscope's recent conference focused on how the sector could deliver high quality services in uncertain times. DDN reports. The drug and alcohol treatment sector was...

New directions

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David Gilliver talks to International Drug Policy Consortium executive director Ann Fordham about raising awareness and the changing course of the global drug policy debate.  ‘It’s clear...

A place to thrive

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  Recovery should mean focusing on what is strong, not what is wrong – and that’s where the ABCD approach comes in, says Rebecca Daddow  Like...

What state are we in?

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A new, improved State of the sector report is underway and needs your input, says Paul Anders Last year DrugScope, on behalf of the Recovery...

Break free

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With many service users struggling to find meaningful paid or unpaid employment, Peter Bentley tells DDN about a new educational course that encourages individuals...

Media savvy

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The news and views from the national media Substance misuse policy is, of course, a subject of passionate debate at all points on the political...

Drug use in prisons

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Promotional feature A new profile of drug use in prisons Mark Napier talks to DDN about the emergence of the complex problem of novel psychoactive substances, and...

Take-home naloxone in prisons

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Research consultant, Arun Sondhi, from the Centre for Public Innovation (CPI), talks to DDN about the findings of his latest research into take-home naloxone...

Public health focus for drugs and alcohol?

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Will Public Health England and a new ministerial team help to refocus drug and alcohol policy, or are they empty exercises in rebranding? DDN...

Cannabis class

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With cannabis problems more prevalent than ever, Edinburgh charity Crew has devised a masterclass to share knowledge. Fergus Boden reports Why are there are so few opportunities to...

Safe from harm

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Last month saw the 23rd International Harm Reduction Conference take place in Lithuania. DDN reports on a gathering of activists, policy makers and service...

Accentuate the positive

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Among the now-familiar talk of emerging chall­enges and stretched resources, delegates at DrugScope’s recent conference heard some positive takes on the new treatment landscape. ‘Whatever...

Save the children

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Adfam’s recent report on the ingestion of drug treatment medications by children makes worrying reading. DDN looks at what could be done to reduce...

User involvement at the 8th service user conference

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In the spotlight Sophie Sherrington came to the conference as a delegate but found herself on stage singing True Colours to rapturous applause I came to...

News from the substance misuse sector

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Media savvy The news and views from the national media The alleged purpose of the Bill is to ‘protect hard-working citizens from the risks posed...

UK drug policy reform

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Off track? Drug treatment is being derailed by the sector’s refusal to push for reform, says Ian Sherwood The distressing reality of drug dependence alters little...

Emotional rollercoaster

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Offering support to families affected by addiction means acknowledging the ups and downs of a close bond, says John Taylor Recently I made a film...

Stemming the tide

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Rising demand, increasing bureaucracy and a client group with complex needs are just some of the challenges facing alcohol services. Hazel Jordan offers a...

Inner Strength

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Kaleidoscope’s recent conference stimulated valuable debate on how women affected by drug and alcohol issues could be better supported in the community. Sarah Orrell...

Prescription for action

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At a parliamentary debate, ADS brought together experts to tackle the pervasive problem of addiction to prescription drugs.  Last month Addiction Dependency Solutions (ADS) held...

On the frontline

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‘I didn’t know that wasn’t what you were meant to do in the drugs field,’ says Mat Southwell of the participative approach he adopted...

Primary position

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‘I do believe that the best care for people who use drugs and alcohol is in their own GP surgeries where possible,’ says Dr Judith...

Off the record

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A frontline drug worker, once a service user himself, warns against being taken in by the politicians’ promises  I grew up in a northern town...

Comment from the substance misuse sector

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Letters and comment  DDN welcomes your Letters Please email the editor, claire@cjwellings.com, or post them to DDN, CJ Wellings Ltd, 57 High Street, Ashford, Kent...

Leaner and keener

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In a climate of austerity the new drug strategy must grow from our successes, says Paul Hayes on behalf of Collective Voice Next month the...

Building a future

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Steve Hodgkins is the founder and CEO of Jobs, Friends and Houses (JFH) – a multi award-winning social enterprise offering employment, peer support and...

‘What about me?’

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The first Adfam/DDN conference for families affected by drug and alcohol use urged carers from all over the country to make their voices heard....

Recovery rising

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September saw recovery activities taking place across the UK and Ireland. Richard Cunningham, Alistair Sinclair and Stuart Green look back on a vibrant recovery...

The whole detox

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Studying homeopathy led Tracy Woodward Gagetta to explore an innovative titration system for drug detoxification, as she explains  After training and working in the fields...

Engaging with the experts

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Michael Gilbert talks to DDN about StreetRx.com, a new website that encourages the exchange of information between drug users while also promoting harm reduction  Meeting...

Picture This

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The day’s opening session heard a range of passionate presentations on the theme of getting your message across ‘I didn’t know how long I’d had hep...

All the world’s a stage

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The arts can play a vital and powerful role in recovery, says Katrina Lahmann  That we all have our roles in the theatre of life...

Home secrets

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With National Children of Alcoholics Awareness Week held this month, Emma Spiegler urges us to tackle the silence, secrecy and stigma faced by many...

Harm Reduction International Conference

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This year's Harm Reduction International Conference in Lithuania brought together delegates from across the globe to discuss the need to provide sufficient political and...

Brink of success

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Social entrepreneur of the year Jacquie Johnston-Lynch talks to DDN about risk, determination and the new challenges facing the recovery movement.  It was on a...

Beyond conviction

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Having a drug-related conviction can spell exclusion from many professions. Nicola Inge of Business in the Community talks to DDN about breaking down barriers...

Turning the tables

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People with drug and alcohol problems can be used to a cycle of punishment and low self-esteem. Kaleidoscope used a recovery awards event to reverse...

Service user involvement

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Keep it real! The exhibition area was a vibrant bustle of networking all day as service user groups shared information on their activities. What did...

Cycling for recovery

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The ultimate challenge John Lowes takes us with him on a very personal journey Today I walked two miles, swam one mile, cycled 20 miles...

Hepatitis C : new hope, old problems

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PROMOTIONAL FEATURE  People with hepatitis C in the UK have a greater chance of being cured now than at any other point in the history...

Voyage of discovery

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With its Voyage of Recovery just completed, David Gilliver talks to Phoenix Futures chief executive Karen Biggs about overcoming polarisation and embracing change When Phoenix...

Kaleidoscope’s – The Big Debate

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Chaired by Adele Blakebrough, The Big Debate was the evening event of Kaleidoscope’s conference on women’s issues. The panel included politicians – Kirstie Williams,...

Skills update

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What’s the latest on professional training? Nadine Singh explains the DANOS review. Skills for Health is undertaking a review of the National Occupational Standards (NOS)...

Room at the table?

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‘I will never make apologies for being emotive about something that affects us all,’ said Noreen Oliver MBE, opening Creating Recovery, The Recovery Group...

The Buddhist way

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The practice of mindfulness can be a powerful tool in preventing relapse and supporting recovery, says Dr Paramabandhu Groves. Mindfulness has been a cornerstone of Buddhist...

All in a day’s work – DDN 10 year special

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Many things have changed over the last decade for the DDN team – staff, premises, and even the introduction of canine office mascots. But...

Diverted methadone

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Kill or cure? Is it time for us to reappraise our relationship with the ‘life-saving’ drug methadone? Dave Marteau discusses the evidence Since the early 1970s,...

Festive Cheer

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This Christmas day will see the fifth Bubic Christmas dinner for our service users. Previous years’ events have been a huge success and...

Life’s what you make of it

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DDN hears from four winning entrepreneurs – whose success was made even more remarkable by their challenging journeys overcoming addiction. At a glitzy ceremony in...

Joining the dots

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This year’s GPs’ conference had the tricky task of linking primary care to each element of the new and uncertain public health agenda, while...

50 gent

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As Blenheim celebrates its 50th anniversary, chief executive John Jolly talks to David Gilliver about the organisation’s future direction and some of the risks...

Semantic challenge

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The language of new drugs can be unhelpful at best and risky at worst. Kevin Flemen offers a guide Our KFx training course Cats, Bees...

Treatment complete?

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Why are we failing so many people with hepatitis C, even those already in drug treatment, asks Dr Steve Brinksman There is still a lot...

Harm reduction at music festivals

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The song remains the same Music festivals may go hand in hand with drug culture, but we can be loud and clear on harm reduction,...

Sport in recovery

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Good sports Pat Berry and Ron Bell talk about how they help service users improve their wellbeing and build self-confidence from exercise Playing sports on...

Giving Voice

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The morning’s second session, chaired by Peter Hunter, allowed audience members to put their concerns to some of the sector’s key players The new drug...

New alcohol medication Selincro is steeped in controversy

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New alcohol medication Selincro has had a controversial route to market, as Mike Ashton explains. In 2013 Danish pharmaceutical company Lundbeck was authorised by the...

Slow on the draw

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Why are smokers reluctant to exchange the risks of cigarettes for the health benefits of e-cigs, asks Neil McKeganey. E-cigarettes have been characterised by Public...

Alcohol Awareness Week

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Family focus Alcohol Awareness Week 2017 shines a spotlight on alcohol and families, sending the message that support is always available. DDN reports. Alcohol Concern has partnered...

Resounding Victory

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National judo champion Stuart Pascoe thought his sports career was over as his alcohol use spiralled. But with help from Addaction the 46-year-old has...

The Right Fix?

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Safe injecting sites, drug consumption rooms, safe injecting facilities, fix rooms or the rather more grandiose medically supervised injecting centres are just some of...

Brand New Day

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Dr Ed Day has just been appointed as the government’s drug recovery champion. He talks to DDN about the challenges and opportunities of the...

Different perspectives

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We need to dig deep for inspiration and redouble our efforts against reactionary policies, heard this year’s HIT Hot Topics. DDN reports. Photography by...

The Benzo Trap

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Improving our understanding of benzodiazepines would save many lives, says Kevin Flemen. Non-medical use of benzodiazepines creates big challenges for treatment services. There need to...

A moment to reflect

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Addaction started 50 years ago with a desperate mother writing to the paper about her son’s addiction. Much has changed but the charity’s purpose grows...

Time for social action

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Social action is the way forward in tackling complex needs, hears DDN. The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Complex Needs and Dual Diagnosis recently...

The Heart of the Matter

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Can we meet six basic challenges to repair a fragmented treatment system, asks Paul Hayes. Brexit continues to dominate mainstream debate. But far more important...

Surviving and thriving: Kaleidoscope at 50

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‘It’s down to you guys that people get a chance of a new life.’ Eleanor Conway pauses for a serious moment during a ‘stand-up’...

Drugs, Alcohol and Justice Cross-Party Parliamentary Group.

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Good commissioning goes beyond purchasing, hears DDN. A robust discussion on commissioning was the focus of the year’s final meeting of the Drugs, Alcohol and...

Helping families of former members of the UK Armed Forces

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Family Force A new project is reaching out to families of former members of the UK Armed Forces with substance use problems, as Rob Stebbings...

Heroin Assisted Treatment – A helping hand

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Heroin Assisted Treatment (HAT) is showing dramatic progress in transforming lives. DDN reports. ‘Life was shit. I would rob Peter to pay Paul. I’d cry...

Aiming High

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Even in the most difficult circumstances recovery is always possible, says Jody Leach.

Just a child

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The exploitation involved in ‘county lines’ is an urgent call for action, as DDN reports. The brutal killing of a 16-year-old boy shook his community...

What future for our prisons?

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With NPS problems making regular headlines and a general consensus that the system isn’t working, the UK’s prisons are in bad shape. David Gilliver reports...

Creating a future

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Prison can be an opportunity to change deep-rooted behav­iour and begin to flourish, say the team at Addaction tell DDN. ‘I have learnt that the crime...

One Love

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The best way to tackle the stigma of gender stereotyping is with an open heart. DDN talks to Beck Gee-Cohen. ‘I was pretty functional when...

CQC consultation: Have your say!

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Don’t miss the chance to change CQC inspections, says David Finney. The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has recently issued a consultation on changes to the...

In safer hands?

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When should the Mental Capacity Act be used to make decisions on behalf of vulnerable people? Mike Ward unpicks a complicated issue. Read the full...

CZAR GAZING – What is substance misuse treatment for?

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As deputy drug czar for the Blair government, Mike Trace oversaw the expansion of today’s drug and alcohol treatment system. In the third of...

Up close and interpersonal

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Interpersonal group therapy has huge potential to help people in their recovery. However, ongoing supervised practice and support are critical in training effective facilitators, says Dr Tim Leighton.

Dame Carol Black Review – Next Steps

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Dame Black has spoken loud and clear. How policy makers respond will be crucial.

Mental health is in crisis – time to act

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Mental health is in crisis – more so for people from minority groups. How do we reach them before they drown? DDN reports from...

Vital connections

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Most drug-related deaths are of people not in treatment. DDN visits Equinox outreach team in Brighton to hear how they engage with a growing...

Keeping older users in treatment

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Playing for Keeps With Scotland experiencing ever-higher numbers of drug deaths, its government is developing a strategy to keep vulnerable older users in treatment. DDN...

Déjà vu

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While numbers of crack users may be on the increase, the basics of providing an effective service for them haven’t changed, says Danny Hames. I...

Treatment crisis

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Action is needed now to stop the spiralling costs of buprenorphine, says Roz Gittins. We want to offer high quality, safe, cost-effective services to as...

Emotional intelligence – Inner strength

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Emotional intelligence can be a potent tool for recovery, says Derek Fredericks. One hot summer’s day 13 years ago, I remember sitting alone on the...

Hope after chaos

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It’s time to ‘get busy living’, says Tom. I had a good childhood and my parents provided all that I needed. My first years at...

Gender imbalance

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The lockdown may be having a disproportionate effect on female service users, warns Gordon Hay. The coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent lockdown impacts on all...

Safe Corner

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What would persuade a city to accept a drug consumption room? Natalie Davies examines the argument. Glasgow could become the site of the UK’s first...

Beginning of the end

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End of life care is a difficult topic to discuss. Kevin Jaffray suggests ways to start the conversation and provide better palliative options. End of...

Anxious times

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Shocked by cases in his constituency, Bambos Charalambous MP is calling for government action on Xanax. The powerful sedative Xanax is being used by young...

Perfect partners

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As competition for funding heats up it’s time for charities to form meaningful and creative partnerships with the private sector, says Eleanor Youdell. Read this...

A capital idea

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WDP’s Capital Card scheme has been helping to incentivise and empower service users, the team tells DDN. Read the full article in DDN Magazine People who...

Back to Nature: Recovery Project at Phoenix Futures Shipley Park

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Phoenix Futures describe how guests at their recent Shipley Park open day were able to witness the positive impact a beautiful natural setting can...

A change of heart

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  When a ‘general in the war of drugs’ calls the campaign a complete failure, it’s time to listen. DDN reports from the GPs’ conference. ‘For...

Doubling Down

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With World Hepatitis Day on 28 July, now is the time to redouble our efforts towards hepatitis C elimination, says Rachel Halford. World Hepatitis Day...

Positive signals

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Giving families a clear and consistent route to help makes all the difference, as DDN reports. ‘When you work with families in an uncoordinated way...

Back to Reality: alcohol-related brain damage

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Korsakoff’s syndrome is a severe memory disorder, associated with long-term alcohol misuse. Glenn Barnett shares a new model to support those affected and help...

Springboard to success

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RAPt’s apprenticeship programme is helping people to use their experience of addiction to get back into work, as Nathan Motherwell explains. Since 2013 RAPt have...

The bigger picture

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Recovery should be about freedom. So why aren’t we embracing diversity, asks Mark Prest. Picture an addict, what do you see? Someone white, probably work­ing...

One size fits nobody

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With much anecdotal evidence that people are losing their OST of choice, a meeting was held at the DDN conference to ask, ‘are you...

Fighting for a C change

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A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to finally eliminate hepatitis C is within our grasp, says Professor Ashley Brown. Read the full article in October DDN Magazine When I...

Include me in

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The inclusive cities model is a forward thinking-approach to boosting people’s recovery in the communities where they live, say Professor David Best, Professor Charlotte...

The power of naloxone

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As soon as Harbour Housing introduced naloxone a life was saved. A decade on they are looking back on one of their best decisions

Matters of Life and Death

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Kevin Flemen confronts a topic we all need to talk about.

Recovering from hepatitis C: Steps to empowerment through peer support

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There are more than 200,000 people in the UK living with hepatitis C, but only half of these are diagnosed and as few as...

The importance of harnessing service user activism

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Harnessing service user activism is the key to stopping drug and alcohol services sliding further down the list of ‘targeted outcomes’, says Martyn Cheesman The...

Stay ahead of CQC

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Pleased with your CQC inspection or bruised by the experience? David Finney gives you the key issues. The first phase of inspections of substance misuse...

Commissioning: What’s the Name of the Game?

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Has commissioning lost its way – or are there opportunities to be grasped? DDN reports. The commissioning structure needs an overhaul, according to the...

Media Savvy

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The news, and the skews, in the national media. The history of prohibition proves it fuels gangsterism and forces up potency, from moonshine replacing beer...

Clear steer on alcohol

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Launching the Alcohol Charter, key figures from the sector called for a definitive alcohol strategy based on evidence, as DDN reports. Read the full article...

Rising tide

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The ‘tough on drugs’ approach is impractical, outdated and costly in every sense, according to a meeting of the APPG for Drug Policy Reform. Considering...

Inside Out

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When delivering recovery services to prisoners, demonstrating impact is a complex but vital process, says Carwyn Gravell. Forward’s range of structured, abstinence-based treatment programmes (which...

In the Picture

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The parliamentary group discussion moved to Zoom for its first meeting since the crisis hit services.

Winning attitude

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Being recognised through a national award made Catherine Larkin and Danny Hames realise the value of Inclusion’s eager adoption of a naloxone strategy. Last November...

Let’s look ahead by investing in young people, says Mentor UK

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We need to look ahead – prevention work with young people is an investment in the future, says Mentor UK's chief executive Michael O'Toole. Many...

Commissioning for change

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An independent expert faculty has been set up to consider a vital new approach to commissioning. Mark Gilman, Paul Musgrave, Niamh Cullen, Terry Pearson...

Puncturing the myths?

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Acupuncture is commonly used as a complementary therapy in the substance use field. But how effective is it, asks Natalie Davies. Read this article in...

Street Smart: integrated outreach

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The ISEU project is taking street outreach to the next level, says Peter Burleigh. Read the full article in DDN magazine I’ve been going into hostels,...

The Recovery Street Film Festival – The bigger picture

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Junaid tells us how he became involved in making a film for the 2017 Recovery Street Film Festival. In 2015 I was using crack cocaine...

Out of commission

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With the government’s long-awaited alcohol strategy showing no signs of materialising any time soon, the newly launched Commission on Alcohol Harm is hoping to fill in some of the gaps.

Doorstep Challenge

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Strong partnerships could overturn nimbyism and make supervised injecting facilities a reality, DDN reports. Read the full article in DDN Magazine A supervised injecting facility (SIF,...

We need to talk about medical marijuana

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While it may be nominally legal, medical marijuana needs to be far more easily available and its use encouraged by treatment services.

Learning curve: Involving social work students in substance misuse

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Bringing together social work students and people in recovery gave an opportunity to share skills and knowledge, as Marelize Joubert reports. Attending a substance misuse conference...

More choice, more options

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New versions of drugs are constantly being developed and trialled, including injections of naltrexone and buprenorphine that can last up to six months, as...

Losing the legacy

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Mark Reid’s alcohol problems started with his dad and became the focus of his life. He describes how Nacoa gave him the insight and...

PCCs lead the call for change

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It used to be that senior police, like politicians, would only speak out on drug policy from the safety of retire­ment. These days, however,...

State of the sector: Time to talk

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When the going gets tough, is it time to get round the table, asks DDN. Read the full article in October's DDN Magazine A couple of...

A space to grow

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We are failing to reach women, connect with them and provide a safe environment in treatment, hears DDN. Read the full article in DDN here Drug-related...

DDN Conference 2020 Postponed – click for details

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The DDN Conference 2020

Become a Playwright

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Outside Edge Theatre Company invite you to enter an exciting competition with a life-changing prize. Outside Edge Theatre Company (OETC) is the UK’s only theatre...

I’m worth… survey

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  Thank you for taking the time to answer questions about your work in relation to hepatitis C. Your answers will be anonymised and will...

Can positive psychology help to treat dual diagnosis?

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Katalin Ujhelyi, Jerome Carson and Ioanna Melidou share results of a new study. People with dual diagnosis – co-occurring substance misuse and mental health issues...

A guide to fentanyl – Meet the fentanyls

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With a vast range of forms and potencies, the fentanyl family bring too many unknowns. Kevin Flemen gives an essential guide. Click here to read...

Harm reduction on a knife edge

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Disinvestment in harm reduction is hurting services and failing clients, say those struggling to maintain life-saving provision. DDN reports. ‘A couple of weeks ago I...

Access for autism

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Are alcohol services meeting the needs of adults with autism? Alcohol Concern and the University of Bath are working to improve support for this...

Finding a voice

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Katie’s experience of stigma made her determined to help herself and others – the beginning of Adfam’s #StigmaMakesMeFeel campaign. She shares her story, with...

Staying ahead

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Changes from CQC have felt demanding. Let’s see inspections as an opportunity, says Jay Stewart. Read the full article in DDN Magazine Last year, the Care...

Review of the year 2019

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Cash strapped Christmas Battered by Brexit, the public went to the polls yet again. In the treatment sector, meanwhile, more long-established facilities are forced to...

June Letters and Comment

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Letters and comment from June DDN magazine

A matter of conviction

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Tony Margetts looks at whether prison reform is heading in the right direction. For all the wrong reasons prisons are in the news. Hardly a week...

Ketamine use: advice from the experts on harm reduction

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The growing popularity of ketamine use is not matched by knowledge within treatment services. Sara Woods went to harm reductionists Mat Southwell and Amy...

Alcohol strategy is ripe for refreshment

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Time is of the essence in overhauling the alcohol strategy, says the Drugs, Alcohol and Justice APPG. DDN reports. ‘We were asked by government, “what...

A foot in the door

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Seeking healthcare can be daunting for homeless people. DDN visits a practice in north London that takes every opportunity to engage. Read this article in...