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Setting Precedent, A Federal Court Rules Jail Must Give Inmate Addiction Treatment
This week, a federal appeals court addressed the right to treatment for an inmate who suffers from opioid addiction, a move that legal advocates say could have wide repercussions. The United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in Boston ruled that a rural Maine jail must provide Brenda Smith with medication for her opioid use disorder. One of her attorneys, Emma Bond, a staff attorney with the ACLU of Maine, says the new ruling has the potential to create a "big signal" for jails across the country and combat the social barriers preventing incarcerated people from receiving treatment. more

New city legislation would effectively decriminalize some pot possession in Louisville
City lawmakers are looking at effectively decriminalizing some marijuana possession in Louisville, by telling police not to focus on adults who possess small amounts of marijuana for personal use. more

Experimental brain implants studied as opioid deaths rise
Patient Number One is a thin man, with a scabby face and bouncy knees. His head, shaved in preparation for surgery, is wrapped in a clean, white cloth. Years of drug use cost him his wife, his money and his self-respect, before landing him in this drab yellow room at a Shanghai hospital, facing the surgeon who in 72 hours will drill two small holes in his skull and feed electrodes deep into his brain. more

Opioid Addiction Drug Going Mostly To Whites, Even As Black Death Rate Rises
White drug users addicted to heroin, fentanyl and other opioids have had near exclusive access to buprenorphine, a drug that curbs the craving for opioids and reduces the chance of a fatal overdose. That's according to a study out Wednesday from the University of Michigan. It appears in JAMA Psychiatry. more

Ancient hallucinogens found in 1,000-year-old shamanic pouch
A SMALL POUCH, made from three fox snouts neatly sewn together, may contain the world’s earliest archaeological evidence for the consumption of ayahuasca, a psychoactive plant preparation indigenous to peoples of the Amazon basin that produces potent hallucinations. more

New state law puts patients first, ahead of insurance companies-SB54
Imagine being diagnosed with a chronic health condition — one that interferes with your daily life and makes even the simplest tasks a challenge. Fortunately, your physician has prescribed a treatment or medication that’s expected to make your condition much more manageable. more

Louisville arms drug users with tests to avoid No. 1 killer: fentanyl
A tall and slender woman with sunken cheeks scooped up 70 dirty needles and stepped inside an RV — home to Louisville's controversial roaming syringe-exchange program. She paused to cough while chatting with a worker, who offered her polite words of encouragement and several clean needles to prevent the spread of HIV, hepatitis C and hepatitis A. more

Punishing Pain Patients for the Addiction Crisis
We are in the midst of an opioid epidemic that has taken the lives of thousands of people. It’s a real crisis. But solutions risk punishing patients in terrible pain for the abuse of these medicines by others. more

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