County Supervisors Approve Needle Exchange
San Luis Obispo County supervisors on Tuesday unanimously voted to create two needle exchange programs to reduce the spread of diseases such as HIV and hepatitis C by reducing needle sharing, the San Luis Obispo Tribune reports.
One program will allow pharmacies to sell up to 10 new syringes for each used needle a person brings. Pharmacies can choose whether they want to participate in the exchange.
Under the second program, people will be allowed to exchange up to 30 needles per week at sites in San Miguel and San Luis Obispo.
Supervisors annually will review the programs, including data collected on the number of:
- People stuck with discarded, used needles in public places;
- Used needles collected; and
- Illicit drug-related service calls.
According to public health records, more than 28% of the 300 to 500 HIV cases in the county can be attributed to injection drug use (Arnquist, San Luis Obispo Tribune, 7/19). This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.