safe injectings

Quebec to invest $12M in safe injection sites

The Quebec government will invest $12 million over three years to create and open safe drug injection sites in Montreal.

Part of the funding will go toward converting three community organizations — Cactus, Dopamine and Spectre de rue — into designated supervised injection sites that offer a clean and safe location for drug users.

The money will also help create a mobile unit that will offer the same services to a few boroughs across Montreal.

The CIUSSS-Centre-Sud-de-l'Île-de-Montréal, the regional health agency in the city’s Centre-Sud neighbourhood, has started listing job postings for nurses for the three potential safety injection sites.

Lucie Charlebois, the Quebec minister for public health, said it’s only a question of time before Montreal opens its first safe injection site.

“We’re at the final stage,” she told Radio-Canada. “Because we’ve done all the work related to installations, because we’re posting jobs, it means that we’re moving forward with great speed.”

She added that everyone involved is working to make sure that the centres meet the criteria set out by Health Canada in order to open as soon as possible.

Carole Morissette, the medical chief of Montreal Public Health, said once the criteria outlined by Health Canada is met, Quebec can request federal approval for the safe injection site to open.

“This request for exemption means we send in curriculum vitae and the certificates of good conduct for the staff who will work in the centre and, finally, a visit from Health Canada on the premises once they are completed,” Morissette told Radio-Canada.

The centres could open and provide care as soon as this winter or spring 2017.

Yeah, alright, I wimped out of calling the health center on Thursday. Didn’t get any homework done, either. I just don’t really know what to say. “Hey, highly trained professional people! I’d like to inject dubiously-safe drugs at unknown dosages into my body because I think it might help! Can I come in next Tuesday?” Like that’s gonna work.

Sighs. I’ve been having these nights more often, lately. I get home and manage to talk myself out of doing anything serious in my life, laze around for two or three hours, then go to bed. I just tell myself it’s better than my pattern in freshman-through-senior year, where self harm fit somewhere in there, and often into my mornings, too.

I guess self-doubt is kind of part and parcel of being a human. I dunno. I don’t want to rely on my parents - putting that sort of burden on them is unfair, I should becoming more self-reliant. Plus I doubt they’d tell me anything I haven’t already heard from my own mind at midnight - “this isn’t what’s right for you”, “can’t you just push through it?”, “like hell we’re going to support you”. That kind of cheery stuff.

I’m not blaming them at all, obviously. Hell, maybe I could walk up to my mom, have an awkward 20-minute conversation, and get to a gender therapist in a few weeks. Maybe I could walk up to my dad, and maybe I could convince him to…I dunno, be proud of me? Not be openly disparaging? More likely, I’ll just keep all this on this little blog and keep on keeping on till I just can’t.

Health groups deliver clean needles to addicts as London, Ont. explores safe injection site

As the federal government prepares to make it easier for communities to open safe injection sites, a recovering addict in one of Canada’s most prolific drug cities is saluting the move.

London is one of several Canadian cities examining safe injection sites as a way to reduce the spread of disease and to encourage users to seek treatment.

One former addict told CBC News a safe-injection site in London would have helped him recover from his opiate and crystal meth addiction. The 29-year old finally quit after a 13-day bender in a cheap, downtown London hotel.

That experience left him in a psychotic state. His body was covered in sores caused by nervous scratching and he weighed 100 lbs.

“I can vividly remember picking up dirty needles off the ground to use because I needed to get high,” said Dan, who asked that his last name be withheld for fear of stigmatization.

A public health emergency

Health Minister Jane Philpot said Thursday there should be no unnecessary barriers for communities who want to open supervised injection sites.

She is calling intravenous drug use a public emergency and says Ottawa is working with municipalities to ensure it is done right.

With calls for safe injection sites growing in political circles, users are speaking up as well about street-level experiences.

“Having a safe place to use means clean needles and also interaction with staff,” Dan said.

Toronto approved three injection sites earlier this summer, paving the way for other municipalities to do the same. 

London is well into the process of studying safe injection sites. The research phase is now complete and public consultations are expected to start later this fall or early next year.

Having staff to talk to inside an injection site would help addicts get help, Dan explained.

“The staff inside might be the only normal person you get to talk to all day and that’s a big deal when you’re thinking about getting sober,” he said.

His drug use resulted in Dan contracting Hepatitis C, a strain that is no longer in his system. But he says he was lucky he avoided any long-term health problems.

“Your inhibitions drop dramatically, especially when you’ve been up for four days and you’re out of your mind on meth,” Dan said. “You’re having lots of unprotected sex and I’ve seen what happens.”

London: A prolific problem

Standing in a back alley in London’s downtown, Dan says it would take no time to buy drugs, especially crystal meth, a popular substance in the city right now.

London’s reputation as a city with a drug problem was highlighted earlier this year when public health officials declared a public health crisis and released some staggering statistics.

More than 2.5 million needles are being handed out each year in the city of about 400,000. That makes London second to only Vancouver when it comes to the numbers of public needle use.

London is also dealing with record high rates of infections caused by needle use, including 44 new reported cases of HIV-AIDS this year. Those figures stand in stark contrast to the rest of the province where HIV rates are dropping.

“There are people of all walks of life who inject drugs,” says Dan, who stresses the public would be amazed by the diversity of users. “In recovery, I’ve met doctors and lawyers and we eat lunch together and talk about how some people can hide it better than others.”

Needles on wheels

If a safe injection is approved in London, it could be many months before the doors open. In the meantime, public health organizations are trying other harm-reduction approaches, including a rare needle delivery service.

The Regional HIV-AIDS Connection has a minivan that travels around the city five days a week delivering clean needles and injection kits, as well as picking up dirty sharps.

“I don’t think there’s any place in the city I haven’t been to,” says Mike McGregor, driver and outreach worker with the organization. “I’ve got quick kits for people who need a few syringes and then there are boxes of 100 with different needle sizes.”

McGregor says more women than men typically call for delivery, and the majority have secure housing. On average, he says he makes 10 deliveries a day.

“I used it when I was staying in apartments where lots of people were shooting up,” says former drug user Dan.

“It was also great because I wouldn’t have to take a box of dirty needles on the bus and have people feel scared of me.”

The delivery service started five years ago and costs the Regional HIV-AIDS Connection $91,000 a year. It’s unique in Ontario, with most cities operating a stationary van where people can exchange supplies.

McGregor says this way he gets to know people well and they feel comfortable talking to him about recovery.

“People can open up if they feel like it and tell me things without being judged or feeling any stigma.”

Health Canada will reduce barriers to safe injection sites, says Philpott

Federal Health Minister Jane Philpott is asking her officials to make it easier for communities to approve and set up safe injection sites because of what she calls a public health emergency.

“I’ve made it very clear to my department that there should be no unnecessary barriers for communities who want to open supervised consumption sites," Philpott said during question period in the House of Commons. "They are working with communities that are interested in this.”

“Clearly, it’s important that this is done right.”

The minister made the comments in response to a question from Vancouver Kingsway MP Don Davies. He said Canada was on track for 2,000 overdose-related deaths this year and wanted to know what Philpott was doing to make safe-injection sites easier to set up. 

The Liberals have long supported the expansion of safe injection sites as a means of harm reduction for addicts, but have been slowed in approving new sites by legislation brought in under the Conservatives.

The Respect for Communities Act, which came in in 2015, requires 26 criteria to be met before the federal government can begin considering a new safe consumption site.

Critics of the law say that meeting all 26 criteria is onerous and takes so long that addicts literally die in back alleys because there is no supervised location where they can be treated when they overdose.

Philpott has told officials to take into consideration the public health emergency that is occurring in many communities and directed staff to review all 26 criteria and remove or amend anything that poses an unnecessary barrier to getting a site up and running. 

After question period Davies told reporters he welcomed the government’s decision as “excellent” and “long overdue,” but urged the Liberals to move quickly.

Davies said the opioid overdose crisis has been going on for months if not years, and every stakeholder in the country is unanimous that getting more supervised injection sites up now will save lives.

“This is a national health crisis, and in that kind of situation I expect the government to move very quickly, and they haven’t moved quickly enough,” he said. 

On Thursday Philpott said that she was determined to see progress. 

“We’re also looking at the legislation under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act,” she said. "And if it becomes clear to us that we need to make some further amendments to that act to … ensure that there are no barriers, then we will certainly do that.“

Communities need a say: Tory critic

Conservative health critic Colin Carrie accused the Liberals of hypocrisy, saying they are keen to get social licence from communities when building pipelines, but are happy to circumvent the consultation process when it comes to safe injection sites. 

"The Respect for Communities Act gives police, residents and municipal leaders a say when it comes to opening an injection site in their community,” he said. 

“Instead of making it easier for drug addicts to consume drugs, the Liberal government should support treatment and recovery programs to get addicts off drugs, and enact heavy mandatory minimum sentences to crack down on drug traffickers.”

Health Canada will reduce barriers to safe injection sites, says Philpott

Federal Health Minister Jane Philpott is asking her officials to make it easier for communities to approve and set up safe injection sites because of what she calls a public health emergency.

“I’ve made it very clear to my department that there should be no unnecessary barriers for communities who want to open supervised consumption sites," Philpott said during question period in the House of Commons. "They are working with communities that are interested in this.”

“Clearly, it’s important that this is done right.”

The minister made the comments in response to a question from Vancouver Kingsway MP Don Davies. He said Canada was on track for 2,000 overdose-related deaths this year and wanted to know what Philpott was doing to make safe-injection sites easier to set up. 

The Liberals have previously expressed support for harm reduction and the minister has said she would consider whether the federal government should do more to make them work.

Councillors in Kamloops, B.C., unanimously support safe injection clinics

KAMLOOPS, B.C. — City councillors in Kamloops, B.C., have voted unanimously in favour of considering a supervised drug injection site similar to the groundbreaking Insite facility in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside.   

The vote followed a presentation from Interior Health medical health officer Dr. Silvina Mema, who says the health authority is mulling up to two sites in the city.

But an immediate launch of the pilot project is unlikely because Mema says clinic locations haven’t been found, community and government consultations are still required and Health Canada approval is needed.

Kamloops Mayor Peter Milobar says he doesn’t believe a safe injection site will be what he calls “a magical solution to everything,” but he hopes the facility will reduce overdoses in the community.

Interior Health wants to link the clinics to an already existing harm-reduction service for drug users but officials with at least one Kamloops social service agency say they don’t have the resources to provide required detox, treatment or housing.

Mema agrees one or two clinics will not be a complete answer to the overdose epidemic, but believes the health authority must act.

“This is one more piece of work we are doing to address people who are actively injecting drugs and don’t have a place to inject, and don’t have someone to look after them,” she says.

B.C. has declared a public health emergency due to more than 400 overdose deaths this year alone deaths from powerful opioids such as fentanyl.

Interior Health predicts fatal overdoses in Kamloops in 2016 could be six times higher than last year. (CFJC)

The Canadian Press

Forgotten People

I was speaking with someone new to Vancouver and with living in Gastown just off Hastings one of the first things she noticed is her loss of sympathy for the homeless. It reminded me of myself upon my arrival to Vancouver too, and the similar changes that this move evoked in me. I don’t give the homeless the time of day usually now, and most of the homeless are pretty damn defeated themselves.

I’ve gotten the full spectrum of pleas and angry outbursts from the homeless of Vancouver. From threats to the kindest of requests, I’ve heard it all. Occasionally I can spare a few bucks, but I can’t afford to give them much, and they certainly can’t afford to take much either. I heard on the radio how the safe injection sites are now 24 hours on the days that people receive their social assistance. Between the government and the bleeding hearts we give them far too much and all it does is propagate the problem.

I can’t imagine a scenario where a former addict would be grateful that the government provided the drugs that enabled them to stay down in the gutter for a decade knowing that the same money could have helped them overcome the addiction sooner. You hear Christie Clark talking about these addicts being our sons, daughters, brothers, and sisters pleading to the province and yet all we do is enable them to keep on using. You can get a prescription for heroin right now, in an effort to curb fentanyl deaths. Great idea actually, but don’t just send them back out onto the streets! We should have the resources in place that will help them overcome their addiction completely and sending them back out to the streets isn’t helping.

There’s a time for tough love, and I honestly believe this is it. They can’t be given the choice to stay addicted – if they want to get high on the government’s supply, they best be prepared to get better. We need to fix this problem at the root. All I am addressing today in this blog is that we are breeding total apathy towards our people on the streets who have succumbed to addiction. There’s obviously many factors at play, but at the end of the day our tax dollars are going towards getting them their next fix when really we should be giving them the opportunity to fix themselves.

whothefuckiscas replied to your post:.

ah mah gah ur talking the demon dean stuff right?? sam got the same blood type as dean but i’m guessing that’s not totally safe?? what all those injections for all that time could cause?? iron poisoning?? ur white blood cells attacking ur red blood cells?? blood clots?? i guess sam was smart enough to get pathogen free blood i mean come onnn. science me bill nye

yeP white blood cells are the main issue even if the blood type matches. hospital-approved blood transfusions do not contain white blood cells, because unless sam and dean are HLA-matched (self-immune markers similar enough that your white blood cells won’t recognize them as foreign and attack; this is RARE) there will be what is called graft-versus-host-disease. 

pathogens are less of an issue unless someone is currently sick or has one of those viruses that stay in your blood like HIV, or the bacteria responsible for TB

but you know, this is SPN.
they thought the meds used in anesthesia and lethal injections are a) found in broom closets and b) cause seizures instead of sedation and respiratory arrest. they also think you can still get vertical after you’ve lost enough blood to fall unconscious (spoilers: you can’t. hypovolemic shock results in pressure dropping too low for blood to reach the brain, especially if you’re sam winchester-tall)

Mainline Needle Exchange hands out more needles but rations some supplies

At Mainline Needle Exchange, demand for clean needles is up. Staff will hand out a million syringes to injection drug users this year — a record number for the program which serves the Halifax-area and communities throughout the mainland.

That’s not all the harm-reduction program provides: Mainline also gives out supplies such as glass stems, used as crack pipes, tubes of sterile water, and Stericups, heat-resistant spoons known on the street as cookers.

‘Mainline was a saviour’

The safe injection supplies are items that Norman English, 47, has come to rely on over the last five months. He’s battling an addiction to opiates which he shoots up to get a faster high. A recent blood test confirmed he was disease-free.

“To me, Mainline was a saviour,” says the Halifax man. “They helped me out big time.”

The increased demand for free needles and drug supplies is covered by Mainline’s operating budget of $280,000. That’s the same amount provided last year by the Department of Health and Wellness. But last year, the district health authorities came through with an extra $120,000. The extra cash allowed Mainline to maintain services such as staying open seven days a week.

New funding body

But things are different this year. Mainline director Diane Bailey says the service needs an extra $220,000 to maintain current services and meet the growing demand. Mainline served 26,474 contacts in 2015-2016. That’s a 42 per cent increase from 15,323 served in 2005-2006.

She says the Nova Scotia Health Authority will become the primary funding body for Mainline and there’s no guarantee that the increase will be approved.

So she has taken preemptive moves on budget.

Fewer road trips

Since late May, Mainline’s outreach vans have been making fewer trips. Instead of road trips every two weeks to Pictou, Truro, Amherst, Shubenacadie, Bridgewater, and the Annapolis Valley, those communities get visits from the van on a monthly basis.

And it now rolls into Yarmouth every other month instead of monthly. The hours of part-time staff who operated the vans were reduced, forcing the one full-time worker to get behind the wheel.

The road trips are busy. A drug user who shows up at the van can have as many clean needles as they want, some pick up as many as 2,000 to share with others. Outreach worker James Williams says he will hand out anywhere from 10,000 to 30,000 needles in one day.

But other safe injection supplies, such as crack pipes and cookers, which are more costly than needles, are rationed. Only two are handed out even though it’s not unusual for an addict to go through 10 a day. 

'We’re falling behind’

With fewer of those supplies given out, the likelihood of a user being infected with HIV or Hepatitis C by sharing dirty tools increases.

“We’re [into] harm reduction, but we’re falling behind,” says Williams.

More people are being served and more needles are being given out, he says. “But the other supplies that they need to go with that are usually what gets cut in numbers.

"More people [are] at risk of catching HIV or Hep C,” Williams says.

English says that even during his worst drug binges, he’s always tried to practice safer drug use. He’s concerned about friends who may not be as careful. 

“You get in a circle of people using and the next thing you know, he’s jonesing, wants a hit,” says English. “He’s using someone else's and he’s got a disease, or a chance of [one]. Yah, it’s a worry.”

More drug users getting clean

There is some good news. More injection drug users are trying to get clean. From April 1 to Sept. 6, Mainline referred 135 clients for methadone treatment.

That’s a big increase, 90 clients were recommended for methadone programs in all of last year.

English is one of Mainline’s clients who’ve made the move to methadone. He’s been clean for three weeks and while he says it’s a daily struggle against addiction, he says he’s hopeful. And grateful to Mainline.

“Yah, they were there to help me, give me the stuff to do the drug, but they were also there to guide me to come out of the drug,” says English. 

“I would honestly say if it wasn’t for Mainline, I would be in jail today.”

Pregnant drug addicts should be able to safely inject in Sydney

Dr Mary Harrod weaned off heroin when she was seven months’ pregnant with her son. She is calling for a law change in Sydney so other pregnant addicts can safely give up injecting drugs.

theguardian.com
Safe injection clinic says 90% of clients' heroin had dangerous drug additive

Insite opened in 2003 and remains the only supervised injection facility in North America, with more than 6,500 people visiting in 2015.
North Americas only supervised injection site for drugs like cocaine, speed and crystal meth has found that 90% of its clients heroin contained the powerful synthetic fentanyl.
Supervised injection is one of many interventions touted in the harm reduction model for treating drug addiction, which seeks to reduce the negative consequences of drug use.
Vancouvers Insite, which offers health services including supervised injection, said that of the 173 drug checks it did for fentanyl in a month, 90% tested positive for the potent synthetic drug.
Insite checked for fentanyl as part of a pilot program that lets clients test their drugs at an injection station with strips that were developed to check urine for fentanyl.


I am a bot written by a Mathematician

Posted at Fri Sep 2 19:00:11 2016

As fentanyl crisis claims lives, calls renew for safe injection site in Montreal

As Montreal awaits federal approval for a safe injection site, activists are renewing calls for more resources to prevent overdoses.

Dozens gathered at Émilie-Gamelin Park on Wednesday evening to raise awareness of safe drug use. The recent spread of fentanyl, a powerful narcotic that’s often cut into heroin, has created public health crises in many cities.

“I’ve lost five friends and it’s five people that could have been saved,” said David Champagne of the safe drug use group Association Québécoise pour la promotion de la santé des personnes utilisatrices de drogues.

Having a designated site to inject drugs under clinical supervision would go a long way to prevent overdose deaths, activists say.

“There’s not really a way to test [for fentanyl] or avoid it, but you can reduce your dose, especially if you buy from a new dealer,” said Sandrine Brodeur, a user who teaches others about safe use. “You can split your first dose in four, or in two to make sure the drug is not too strong.”

Vancouver has had a safe injection site since 2003, which receives an average of 440 visits a day.

New Democratic MP for Hochelaga, Marjolaine Boutin-Sweet, was at the gathering.

“Supervised injection sites are very important to me. There would be one established in Hochelaga as soon as they come out. They’re very useful as they do save lives,” she said.

cbc.ca
Toronto city council approves 3 safe injection sites
City's Board of Health, mayor, police chief all back plan

Toronto city council has approved the creation of three safe injection sites in the city.

Council voted 36-3 in favour of the motion at its meeting Thursday.

The Toronto Board of Health unanimously supported the creation of the sites in early July, and families of drug users have backed them, as well. Councillors were warned drug overdoses are going up in the city, and that something needs to be done about the public health issue.

The sites, which are aimed at providing a safe environment for drug users, are expected to be installed at three locations in the downtown core.

Both Toronto Mayor John Tory and Toronto police Chief Mark Saunders backed the creation of the sites, despite concerns from critics that they may encourage drug use.

Safe injection is already legal in Canada, as long as the federal government grants approval under Bill C-2. Federal Health Minister Jane Philpott told CBC News in March that supervised injection sites are among a number of strategies the government has put forward to cope with drug abuse and overdose deaths.

The Toronto Board of Health recommended three sites, which the city plans to ask the province to fund, including the Toronto Public Health office near Dundas and Victoria streets, the South Riverdale Community Health Clinic and the Queen West-Central Toronto Community Health Centre.

vimeo

How To Prepare A Needle: Meth (Safe Injecting)

After tons of requests for a video on how to prepare a needle, I have finally made one! Please excuse my hand. I tore my flexor tendon in my finger and have surgery coming up this Monday to get it fixed. Despite my injury, I still have a good range of motion and was able to make this video. I hope you guys enjoy! Click here to submit video requests.

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I do not promote the use of illicit drugs. Please be safe and responsible. Please read my disclaimerFor further inquiry, click here

For written information on how to prepare a needle, I have detailed, step by step instructions that contain tips + pointers + safe injection practices, as well as instructions on how to prepare a needle with meth, heroin, or morphineHere you can read about Safe Injecting: How to Register a NeedleIf you are unsure how to safely administer your shots, get help. Everyone starts somewhere. Most importantly, do not share needles with anyone. It is not safe.

Follow the 3-Poke Rule or 1 and Done Rule: Once you have used a needle 3 times, dispose of it. Open a new one. 1 and done, meaning 1 use and then dispose of it. It’s safest to open a new sharp for every use. Needles begin to dull after even a single poke.

Tools for sterile needle preperation:
sterile syringe, tourniquet, sterile water, sterile alcohol wipes, sterile bandaids, sterile spoon (cooker/stericup), cottons, biohazard disposal.

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  • Measure out the amount of crystal and put it in in your spoon (or stericup).
  • Add roughly 20-30cc of water.
  • Cook the crystal in the water until it just begins to bubble.
  • Stir the shards in the warm water until they have all dissolved. Meth is water soluble.
  • *optional: Add 5-10cc’s (or one drop) of cold water to cool down the liquid.
  • Place a cotton ball in the center of the liquid.
  • Make sure the “eye of the needle” (the side of the needle point that has the hole) is facing down, pressing against the cotton.
  • Begin to pull the plunger back slowly at a 45° angle and the liquid will begin to pour in.
  • Once that has finished, flip the needle around with the tip facing the ceiling.
  • If there are remaining air bubbles, gently shake or flick the barrel until they are gone.
  • Slowly push the plunger to the top of the barrel. There should be no space.
  • Wipe the tip of the syringe off before you shoot. Most of the time there is residue that is left on top – that is the only reason doing a shot of meth should burn.

It’s actually laughable that the Harper Government thinks that outlawing safe injection sites and enforcing harsher penalties on those convicted of marijuana possession is focusing on prevention, harm reduction and treatment.

It’s also absurd that the Harper Government believes that safe injection sites don’t do anything to fight addiction to opiates when in fact offering treatment to addicts is exactly part of the reason why safe injection sites should exist.

huffingtonpost.com
The Likely Cause of Addiction Has Been Discovered, and It Is Not What You Think
New evidence about addiction isn't just a challenge to us politically. It doesn't just force us to change our minds. It forces us to change our hearts.

This is why mandatory minimums are fucked up. This is why arguing against safe injection sites is fucked up. There is a fundamental failure to understand the nature of the drug problem, which leads to fundamental errors in combatting the drug problem. It’s fucking infuriating.

To forestall one potential argument before it gets off the ground, I’m also going to leave you this excerpt:

But still, surely, I asked, there is some role for the chemicals? It turns out there is an experiment which gives us the answer to this in quite precise terms, which I learned about in Richard DeGrandpre’s book The Cult of Pharmacology.

Everyone agrees cigarette smoking is one of the most addictive processes around. The chemical hooks in tobacco come from a drug inside it called nicotine. So when nicotine patches were developed in the early 1990s, there was a huge surge of optimism – cigarette smokers could get all of their chemical hooks, without the other filthy (and deadly) effects of cigarette smoking. They would be freed.

But the Office of the Surgeon General has found that just 17.7 percent of cigarette smokers are able to stop using nicotine patches. That’s not nothing. If the chemicals drive 17.7 percent of addiction, as this shows, that’s still millions of lives ruined globally. But what it reveals again is that the story we have been taught about The Cause of Addiction lying with chemical hooks is, in fact, real, but only a minor part of a much bigger picture.