Latest News - Alerts - Press Releases
Evidence Of Harm From Fentanyl-Contaminated Heroin issued 27th April 2017. To view alert please click here.
This alert advises of the availability of, and harms from, heroin that has been mixed with fentanyl or carfentanyl, both unusually potent synthetic opioids.
Contaminated Heroin Warning issued 6th February 2015. To view the warning and presenting symptoms click here There have been a number of cases where people have contracted botulism after using contaminated heroin in the UK. Wound botulism is a rare but very serious illness that can be fatal and is caused by a bacterial toxin. It is acquired when spores of the bacterium Clostridium Botulinium get into the body via a wound. The spores are found naturally in the environment (for example in soil), so they can contaminate supplies of street drugs such as heroin. People who use these may get a wound infection through injecting the contaminated drug into skin or muscle. The toxin produced by the bacteria is then absorbed into the bloodstream and leads to paralysis. Wound botulism is not spread from person to person but by using contaminated drugs. Remember this advice from Public Health England (PHE):
- 1. There is no way of knowing if the drugs are contaminated
- 2. Overall smoking heroin is likely to be safer than injecting, though there are still risks.
- 3. If possible stop using heroin. See your GP or someone from a drugs service about starting a substitute prescribed medication
- 4. If you must inject make sure you hit a vein - your blood is better at killing this bacteria than skin or muscle
- 5. Don't share needles, syringes, cookers/spoons or other 'works' with other people using drugs
- 6. Use as little citric acid as possible to dissolve the heroin. A lot can damage the muscle or body under the skin and this damage gives the bacteria a better chance to grow.
- 7. Use a different place on your body with clean' works' if you inject more than one drug. This is important as some drugs e.g. cocaine can reduce the blood supply to the injection site and could give the bacteria better conditions to grow.
- 8. If you get swelling, redness or pain at the injection site, or pus collects under the skin you should get it checked out by a doctor immediately, especially if the infection feels different to others you may have had in the past.
PMMA Drug Alert - issued 28th January 2015 by Public Health England
Following an alert received from Spain on 26th January, PHE is issuing this alert as a warning about the possible continued availability of pills sold as ecstasy but containing large quantities of PMMA (paramethoxymethamphetamine), a more potent chemical linked to a number of recent deaths and hospitalisations in this country.Superman-branded red pills have been found to contain large quantities of PMMA (paramethoxymeth-amphetamine) and have been linked to four deaths in Ipswich, Rendlesham and Telford over the Christmas and New Year period and incidents in the Netherlands and Sweden.
For more information please click here
Public Health England Foil Briefing Aug 2014:
On 8th August 2014 legislation was laid that will permit drug services to provide aluminium foil to drug users for the purpose of smoking drugs, in order to reduce the harms caused by injecting. It is a condition that foil can only be provided in the context of structured stpes either to engage people in a treatment plan or as part of a treatment plan. This briefin explains more about the legislation that will come into force on 5th September 2014 and provides advice to local areas on its implementation. More
Buying Legal Highs online [ Matrix Article Oct 2014]
Article on Global Drug Survey (GDS) finds users moving from dealers to internet, while extent of alcohol use remains 'very worrying'. More drug users are buying their drugs online – including so-called legal highs as well as illegal drugs such as cannabis and MDMA – because they say the quality is better, there is more choice and it is more convenient, research has found. More
EU surveys of 15-16 year olds show that up to 5% of this age group have experienced hallucinogenic drugs, compared with 10% in the USA.
2C-I is a member of the 2CB family and is sometimes sold as ecstasy. Here's everything you need to know about 2C-I, from how to recognize them, what it does and what will happen if you get caught in possession... more
Reclassification of Legal Highs
5th November 2012
The Home Office has decided to classify some synthetic Cannabinoids and Methoxetamine as Class B drugs. Sold under names like 'Mexxy' and 'Black Mamba', these substances have typically been sold on the internet as legal highs... More
Alcohol Harm Map Released Today
18th October 2012
Alcohol Concern has developed an online interactive tool that reveals the real cost of alcohol misuse by local authority in England. The Alcohol Harm Map contains data on people drinking at risky levels, alcohol-related healthcare costs, alcohol-related hospital admissions and alcohol-related deaths.. More
Celebrations all round for Surrey Drug and Alcohol Care Ltd
20th September 2011
It was celebrations all round for Surrey Drug and Alcohol Care Ltd, as they proudly accepted the Queen's Award, an MBE for voluntary organisations, at an event held at Christ Church, Town Square Woking on 16th September 2011. More
Surrey Drug and Alcohol Care Ltd gain full membership to The Helplines Association
7th June 2011
Surrey Drug and Alcohol Care Ltd are now full members of The Helpline Assocation, which provides our callers with another level of quality assurance. The THA independently certify that when you call us you will be provided with unbiased support, information and advice and that the person who takes your call is trained and supported. More ...
Surrey Drug and Alcohol Care Ltd Awarded Queen's Award for Voluntary Service
2nd June 2011
Surrey Drug and Alcohol Care Ltd has been awarded the prestigious Queen's Award for Voluntary Service. This award was inaugurated in 2002 to celebrate the Golden Jubilee year, is made annually to groups who have given "outstanding voluntary work in the community" More ...