Study examines harm reduction among injection drug users

for shorter periods of time. Participants who acquired syringes from safe sources were more likely to dispose of them safely," said Susan Sherman, PhD, the study's lead author, who is an assistant professor in the Department of Epidemiology at the Bloomberg School of Public Health. "This indicates the importance of syringe exchange programs targeting newly initiated injectors, as syringe exchange programs are an important and often times the only health prevention resource for injection drug users. More research is needed to determine if our findings are similar in cities without syringe exchange or pharmacy sale programs."

"Providing safe needles to injection drug users is very controversial in the U.S., although it is a vital component of HIV prevention throughout the rest of the industrialized world and is an important HIV and hepatitis prevention for new injection drug users," said Dr. Sherman.

Melanie Rouch, MHS, doctoral student with the Department of Health Care and Epidemiology at the University of British Columbia and Elizabeth T. Golub, PhD, assistant scientist with the Department of Epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health contributed to the article "Correlates of Safe Syringe Acquisition and Disposal Practices Among Young IDUs: Broadening our Notion of Risk."


Contact: Timothy Parsons
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health

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