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UK. More than half of patients using needle exchange pilot tested positive for Hepatitis C 

More than half of those using a needle exchange programme were positive for hepatitis C antibodies, and just under half of these were previously unaware that they were positive for the virus. (The Pharmaceutical Journal, UK, 17.05.2018)


Kanada. Canada to test first needle exchange program in a North American prison 

Program aims to stop the spread of infections such as HIV, Aids and hepatitis C among inmates who are drug users. (The Guardian, UK, 15.05.2018)


UK. National Needle Exchange Forum: Straight to the Point

A writeup of the National Needle Exchange Forum event held earlier this year. Includes presentations. (NEF, 07.05.2018)


Health Outcomes for Clients of Needle and Syringe Programs in Prisons.

Lazarus JV, Safreed-Harmon K, Hetherington KL, Bromberg DJ, Ocampo D, Graf N, Dichtl A, Stöver H, Wolff H.

Epidemiol Rev. 2018 Apr 12. doi: 10.1093/epirev/mxx019.



Treatment initiation strategies for syringe exchange referrals to methadone maintenance: A randomized clinical trial.

Kidorf M, Brooner RK, Leoutsakos JM, Peirce J.

Drug Alcohol Depend. 2018 Apr 16;187:343-350. doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2018.03.009.



Hepatitis C Treatment Outcomes for People Who Inject Drugs Treated in an Accessible Care Program Located at a Syringe Service Program.

Eckhardt BJ, Scherer M, Winkelstein E, Marks K, Edlin BR.

Open Forum Infect Dis. 2018 Mar 6;5(4):ofy048. doi: 10.1093/ofid/ofy048. eCollection 2018 Apr.


USA. Why a City at the Center of the Opioid Crisis Gave Up a Tool to Fight It

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — To its critics here, the needle exchange was an unregulated, mismanaged nightmare — a “mini-mall for junkies and drug dealers” in the words of Danny Jones, the city’s mayor — drawing crime into the city and flooding the streets with syringes. To its supporters, it was a crucial response to an escalating crisis, and the last bulwark standing between the region and a potential outbreak of hepatitis and H.I.V.

When Charleston closed the program last month after a little more than two years of operation, it was the latest casualty of a conflict playing out in a growing number of American communities. At least seven other such exchanges have closed in the past two years, even as dozens of others have opened. (New York Times, 27.04.2018)


Australien. Needle and Syringe Programs in Australia: Peer-led Best Practice

The Needle and Syringe Programs in Australia: Peer-led Best Practice report outlines recommendations for peer-led best practice for needle and syringe program (NSP) service delivery in Australia. (AIVL - Australian Injecting & Illicit Drug Users League, 09.04.2018)


Schottland. NHS buys mobile needle exchange for addicts amid HIV 'outbreak'

The NHS has bought a mobile needle exchange for heroin addicts to use in a bid to halt an “uncontained HIV outbreak” in Scotland’s largest city.

It is estimated that one-in-five people who inject drugs in public places in Glasgow are now infected with the incurable virus that attacks the immune system and can lead to Aids.

NHS figures obtained by the Sunday Herald show there has been 117 new HIV cases among an estimated 400 to 500 people who inject drugs publicly in Glasgow since 2015. (The Herals – Sunday Herald, Schottland, 18.03.2018)


Public support for safe consumption sites and syringe services programs to combat the opioid epidemic.

McGinty EE, Barry CL, Stone EM, Niederdeppe J, Kennedy-Hendricks A, Linden S, Sherman SG.

Prev Med. 2018 Feb 23;111:73-77. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2018.02.026.



Deutsche AIDS-Hilfe: Konsumzubehör

Im Wissen um die Risiken des intravenösen und inhalativen Drogengebrauchs haben sich in den letzten Jahren beeindruckende Entwicklungen im Bereich der Konsumutensilien (Harm Reduction Tools) vollzogen. Im Fokus steht HIV, Hepatitiden und Abszesse aufgrund von Verunreinigungen und falschen Infektionstechniken zu reduzieren.

Insbesondere das Wissen um die leichtere Übertragbarkeit des Hepatitis B und C Virus  hat dazu geführt, dass eine Reihe neuartiger Einwegutensilien eingeführt wurden.

Hiermit werden erstmals Standards zur Vergabe von Konsumutensilien in unterschiedlichen Einrichtungen beschrieben. Darüber hinaus werden Empfehlungen zur Dokumentation, Arbeitssicherheit sowie zur Qualifikation von Mitarbeiter_innen formuliert.

Die Empfehlungen wurden unter Mitwirkung einer bundesweiten Expert_innengruppe, die sich aus Mitarbeiter_innen aus Aids- und Drogenhilfen mit langjährigen Erfahrungen in der Konsumutensilienvergabe zusammensetzte, erarbeitet.

Wir wollen diese Seite nutzen, um über Weiterentwicklung von Konsumzubehör zu informieren und deren Potentiale und Wirkweisen vorzustellen.(DAH – Deutsche AIDS-Hilfe, März 2018)


Scoping out the literature on mobile needle and syringe programs—review of service delivery and client characteristics, operation, utilization, referrals, and impact

Carol Strike and Miroslav Miskovic

Harm Reduction Journal 2018, 15:6, doi.org/10.1186/s12954-018-0212-3


Needle and syringe programmes and opioid substitution therapy for preventing HCV transmission among people who inject drugs: findings from a Cochrane Review and meta-analysis.

Platt, L., Minozzi, S., Reed, J., Vickerman, P., Hagan, H., French, C., Jordan, A., Degenhardt, L., Hope, V., Hutchinson, S., Maher, L., Palmateer, N., Taylor, A., Bruneau, J., and Hickman, M. (2018)

Addiction, 113: 545563. doi: 10.1111/add.14012.


USA. Orange County’s only needle exchange shuts down after Santa Ana denies permit

Orange County's first and only needle exchange program has shut down after Santa Ana city officials denied its permit application, a move some local advocacy groups and the state's leading public health agency say could negatively affect public welfare. (LA Times, 01.02.2018)


Recovery of Infectious Hepatitis C Virus From Injection Paraphernalia: Implications for Prevention Programs Serving People Who Inject Drugs

Robert Heimer, Mawuena Binka, Stephen Koester, Jean-Paul C Grund, Amisha Patel, Elijah Paintsil, Brett D Lindenbach

The Journal of Infectious Diseases, Volume 217, Issue 3, 17 January 2018, Pages 466–473, doi.org/10.1093/infdis/jix427



Pharmacists’ role in harm reduction: a survey assessment of Kentucky community pharmacists’ willingness to participate in syringe/needle exchange

Amie Goodin, Amanda Fallin-Bennett, Traci Green and Patricia R. Freeman

Harm Reduction Journal2018, 15:4, doi.org/10.1186/s12954-018-0211-4


Needle syringe programmes and opioid substitution therapy for preventing hepatitis C transmission in people who inject drugs.

Platt L, Minozzi S, Reed J, Vickerman P, Hagan H, French C, Jordan A, Degenhardt L, Hope V, Hutchinson S, Maher L, Palmateer N, Taylor A, Bruneau J, Hickman M.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2017 Sep 18;9:CD012021. doi: 10.1002/14651858.CD012021.pub2.


UK. 'First' pharmacy-based needle exchange vending machine in UK

A pharmacy in Lincolnshire has become the first in the UK to offer a needle exchange service using a vending machine, according to a charity.

Drug, alcohol and mental health charity Addaction approached Riverside Pharmacy in Sleaford about installing the vending machine, the organisation said in a statement last week.

The charity helped superintendent pharmacist Chris Mulimba acquire the custom-fit machine from injection equipment suppliers Orion Medical Supplies, it said.

The service operates from the pharmacy's consultation room, where patients can place any used needles in a bin before operating the vending machine with a plastic token given out by the pharmacy staff.

Mr Mulimba told C+D last week that the semi-automated machine “halves the time” taken by staff to complete a needle exchange, bringing it down to five minutes.

“A traditional method takes 10 minutes – you have to assemble the indvidual [pack],” Mr Mulimba explained. “The [vending machine] has everything pre-packed; the only time it takes is talking to the client about harm reduction.” (chemistanddruggist.co.uk, UK, 23.01.2018)


USA. New York City Program Takes Controversial Approach to Opioid Crisis (Audio)

There's no single solution to the opioid crisis, but a New York City program is taking a controversial approach to fighting the epidemic.

It's called "harm reduction,” and it's not new. The non-punitive approach aims to reduce the harmful consequences of drug use. For some programs around the country that means giving access to sterile needles, and, in the case of The Washington Heights Corner Project, a bathroom where users can inject drugs knowing that if they overdose, someone will come to their aid. (WNYC – The Takeaway, 15.01.2018, Audio, 07:26)


The Association Between Residential Eviction and Syringe Sharing among Street-Involved Youth in Vancouver, Canada

Andreas Pilarinos, Lisbon Addictions 2017, Second European Conference on Addictive Behaviours and Dependencies, Lissabon, 24.-26.10.2017

http://www.emcdda.europa.eu/system/files/attachments/6943/14H30_1_Andreas Pilarinos.pptx

The needle exchange debate in Stockholm city council and Swedish Parliament during the 21st century

Lena Eriksson, Lisbon Addictions 2017, Second European Conference on Addictive Behaviours and Dependencies, Lissabon, 24.-26.10.2017

http://www.emcdda.europa.eu/system/files/attachments/6945/14H30_2_Lena Eriksson.pptx

The cost-effectiveness of needle and syringe provision in preventing transmission of Hepatitis C Virus in people who inject drugs in the UK

Zoë Ward, Lisbon Addictions 2017, Second European Conference on Addictive Behaviours and Dependencies, Lissabon, 24.-26.10.2017

http://www.emcdda.europa.eu/system/files/attachments/6947/14H30_4_Zoe Ward.ppt

Health Outcomes for Clients of Needle and Syringe Programs in Prisons: A Systematic Review

Prof. Dr. Heino Stöver, Lisbon Addictions 2017, Second European Conference on Addictive Behaviours and Dependencies, Lissabon, 24.-26.10.2017

http://www.emcdda.europa.eu/system/files/attachments/6881/14H30_2_Heino Stover.pptx

Schottland. Fears over loss of drug addicts' Glasgow Central Station needle exchange as HIV outbreak spreads

USE of needle exchanges by drug addicts has plummeted since one of Scotland's busiest units closed, amid concerns the move is contributing to the growth of an HIV outbreak. (Evening Times, Glasgow, 21.12.2017)


UK/Liverpool. Wirral Needle Exchange: "70% Of Our Clients Are Steroid Users"

As part of our exclusive investigation into steroid use on Merseyside, Radio City News have discovered more people are now injecting performance enhancing drugs than injecting heroin.

"The increase is with steroid users and those of performance enhancing drugs."

Around 70% of clients using the needle exchange operated by Wirral Ways To Recovery in Birkenhead are steroid users. (Radio City, Merseyside/Liverpool, 05.12.2017)


Drogen und Strafvollzug: Relaunch der Safer-Use-Homepage

Die Homepage der Aidshilfe NRW zu den Themenbereichen Spritzenautomatenprojekt NRW und Drogen/Haft erstrahlt nun seit einigen Wochen in neuem Glanz. Neben den gewohnten Inhalten rund um das Spritzenautomatenprojekt (Standorte, Betreiber, Materialbestellung, etc.) und aktualisierten Informationen zu Safer Use, Harm Reduction und Prävention von HIV/Aids und Hepatitis gibt es nun unter anderem auch einen eigenen Bereich für das Thema Strafvollzug und eine regelmäßig aktualisierte Seite mit aktuellen Berichten zu Veranstaltungen, politischen, gesellschaftlichen und medizinischen Entwicklungen, die auch hier im Newsletter aufgegriffen werden. Einige Kapitel befinden sich noch im Aufbau, wir sind jederzeit dankbar für Hinweise zu Ergänzungen und neuen Themen. (Aidshilfe NRW, November 2017)


Findings (UK) Research Analysis: Acceptability of low dead space syringes and implications for their introduction: A qualitative study in the West of England.

Kesten J.M., Ayres R., Neale J. et al.
International Journal of Drug Policy: 2017, 39, p. 99–108.


WHO. Needle and syringe programmes

A key component of the comprehensive package is the provision of sterile injecting equipment and its safe disposal. WHO has reviewed the evidence for the effectiveness of needle and syringe programmes in the Evidence for action series.

The Evidence for action technical paper summarises the evidence in more detail and will be useful for service providers and planners.

The Evidence for action policy brief can be used for advocacy purposes to convince policy makers of the importance of this intervention. It is available in a number of languages.

The practical Guide to starting and managing needle and syringe programmes helps countries and project managers in the implementation and scale-up phase of their programme. (WHO 2017)


Effectiveness of needle and syringe Programmes in people who inject drugs – An overview of systematic reviews.

Fernandes RM, Cary M, Duarte G, et al.

BMC Public Health. 2017;17:309. doi:10.1186/s12889-017-4210-2.


UK. Needle and syringe programmes (Guidelines)

This guideline covers needle and syringe programmes for people (including those under 16) who inject drugs. The main aim is to reduce the transmission of viruses and other infections caused by sharing injecting equipment, such as HIV, hepatitis B and C. In turn, this will reduce the prevalence of blood-borne viruses and bacterial infections, so benefiting wider society.

(NIC – National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, UK, Public health guideline [PH52] Published date: March 2014, next review: 2017)