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The expanded use of electronic health records — intended to improve and streamline healthcare services — has become a bone of contention in the addiction community, where unique privacy concerns could hamper integration with the rest of healthcare. Squabbles aside, however, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is pressing forward with regulations (and incentives) to promote wider adoption of electronic health records across the healthcare system.

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Treatment admissions for prescription-drug problems have tripled in recent years, SAMHSA reports … Putting teens in group therapy with heavy users can lead to more youth drug use … A bid to repeal the state’s new alcohol tax will be the first thing Massachusetts voters will see on the ballot this fall … “Token clubs” provide a safe haven for sober socializing …

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Sales of alcohol for consumption at home has grown 21 percent since 2004, according to market research firm Mintel, Food Product Design reported July 15. Those

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The Massachusetts Department of Public Health won’t proceed with requiring retailers to post graphic warning signs about smoking until an industry lawsuit against a similar

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The USDA has proposed new Dietary Guidelines for Americans that include substantial changes about alcohol. The deadline for public comments on the guidelines is Thursday, July 15.

Every five years, the Departments of Agriculture (USDA) and Health and Human Services (HHS) revisit the dietary guidelines “to promote health and reduce risk for major chronic diseases.”

The Advisory Committee is recommending an average (weekly) rather than daily consumption guideline. Tim Naimi’s accompanying commentary and Marin Institute’s talking points outline the issues.

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A brief advocacy campaign by Umpqua Partners for a Drug-Free Future led to the Borders bookstore chain to move High Times and other marijuana-related publications away from a display of children’s and teen’s books like Twilight, the group said.

Umpqua Partners founding partner Marlene Petersen visited a Waldenbooks location — owned by Borders — and noticed that publications like High Times and Weed World were displayed right behind the counter and near small backpacks for children and Twilight books intended for teen readers.

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Parents who are tough but compassionate towards their kids are best at preventing underage drinking … Republican lawmakers are trying to block D.C.’s medical-marijuana law (again) … Vermont candidates for governor debate decriminalization … Mothers-to-be should be tested for tobacco use and exposure, U.K. health officials recommend …

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The longtime head of the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime, Antonio Maria Costa, is stepping down in July, and the leading candidate to replace him reportedly is Yuri Fedotov, currently Russia’s ambassador to the U.K.

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People in recovery need to deal with their stress to avoid relapse, a new study says … Most evangelical leaders don’t drink, and those who do say they imbibe in moderation … Colorado Springs, Colo., has collected more than $123,000 in taxes on medical marijuana in 2010 … Pregnant women who smoke experience more pelvic pain, researchers say …

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Recovering addicts who failed to take steps to deal with the stress in their lives were more susceptible to craving  — a major predictor of

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