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Join Together, a collaboration of the Boston University School of Public Health and The Partnership at Drugfree.org, delivers substance abuse and addiction news that impacts your work, life and community. Learn more.

JT Weekly- Other Headlines of Interest

Top headlines of the week from Friday, March 14- Thursday, March 20, 2014.

States Consider Synthetic Drug Bans, Opioid Education for Doctors and Marijuana Laws

A number of state legislatures are considering bills banning synthetic drugs, requiring education for doctors who prescribe opioids, and expanding the use of the drug overdose antidote naloxone this session, explains Sherry Green, CEO of the National Alliance for Model State Drug Laws.

Teens’ Definition of “Designated Driver” Can Be Loose, Survey Finds

Teens’ definition of a “designated driver” can be loose, according to a new survey. About one in five teens say their designated person is allowed to have “a little” alcohol or other drugs, as long as they aren’t too impaired to drive.

FDA Commissioner: Zohydro Offers Unique Option to Treat Pain

Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Margaret Hamburg defended the agency’s decision to approve the pure hydrocodone drug Zohydro ER (extended release). At a Senate hearing, Hamburg said, “If appropriately used, it serves an important and unique niche with respect to pain medication and it meets the standards for safety and efficacy.”

Monthly Number of Federal Drug Defendants Drops to Lowest Level in 14 Years

Soon after Attorney General Eric Holder began making changes to drug laws, the number of drug defendants charged by the federal government dropped in January to its lowest monthly level in almost 14 years, according to a new report.

Convenience Store Group Encourages Members Not to Sell E-Cigarettes to Minors

The National Association of Convenience Stores is urging its members not to sell e-cigarettes to minors, the Associated Press reports. The group represents more than 151,280 convenience stores.

OxyContin Manufacturer Tests Tamper-Resistant Form of Hydrocodone

The maker of OxyContin announced promising results from a study of a tamper-resistant form of hydrocodone, The Washington Post reports. The Food and Drug Administration has been criticized for approving Zohydro ER (extended release), a pure form of hydrocodone that is not tamper-resistant.

Vaporizers Gain Popularity Among Marijuana Smokers

A growing number of marijuana smokers are choosing to use vaporizers, which are similar to e-cigarettes, according to USA Today. The popularity of the devices is changing the way marijuana is packaged and sold in states where it is legal.

Study Finds Alcohol Deaths Most Likely to Impact Working-Age Adults

The majority of alcohol-related deaths in the United States occur among working-age adults, a new government study concludes. Adults ages 20 to 64 account for more than two-thirds of these deaths.

Attorneys General to Major Retailers: Stop Selling Tobacco Products

The attorneys general of 28 states and territories are urging major retailers to follow the lead of CVS Caremark and stop selling tobacco products. They sent letters to Rite Aid, Walgreens, Kroger, Safeway and Walmart.

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