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Condoms, Needles & More! Supplies and services offered through the BC Harm Reduction Program
May 7, 2014 by Ashraf Amlani, Harm Reduction Epidemiologist, BCCDC
Harm reduction aims to keep people safe and minimize death, disease, and injury from high-risk behaviour. The BC Harm Reduction Program provides supplies and resources to enhance knowledge, skills, and supports for individuals, families and communities to be safer and healthier.
The program provides the supplies listed below, as guided by the recent Best Practice Recommendations for Canadian Harm Reduction Programs that Provide Service to People Who Use Drugs and are at Risk for HIV, HCV, and Other Harms.
- Supplies for safer sex: assorted male condoms, female condoms, lubricant
- Supplies for safer injection use: assorted needles and syringes, sterile water, cookers (disposable spoons), acidifier, tourniquet, alcohol swabs, personal sharps containers
- Supplies for safer inhalation: tubing and cutters (to make mouthpieces), brass screens, wooden push sticks
Sharing needles and other injection supplies, such as cookers or water, increases the likelihood of spreading HIV and Hepatitis C. Other supplies are also provided to prevent physical damage to skin, lips and blood vessels.
Access to harm reduction supplies should be extended to whoever needs them, regardless of the person’s age, drug-using status, drug of choice, or residence. Supplies are available to community sites that provide other health or social services to populations who may be marginalized or at increased risk, such as people who use drugs, engage in sex trade or identify as LGBTQ2S.
To receive supplies, please contact the harm reduction coordinator for your regional health authority. A full list of supplies and contact information for the coordinator in your health region is available here.
For further information
Visit our knowledge exchange website, Toward The Heart, which features:
- Our supply catalogue
- Harm reduction site finder
- eZine highlighting harm reduction work and research across BC
- Our overdose prevention and response strategy: BC Take Home Naloxone
We are grateful for the ongoing leadership and support of the Harm Reduction Strategies and Services Committee which guides the provincial supply distribution program.
Categories: Program updates