, Volume 87, Issue 4, pp 531-533
Date: 12 Jun 2010

Evaluating a Statewide Pilot Syringe Access Program for Injection Drug Users through Pharmacies in California

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Most states in the USA have already overturned or never had laws prohibiting syringes to be sold to injection drug users (IDUs) without a prescription. The goal of selling syringes to IDUs without a prescription is to curtail the transmission of blood-borne viruses such as human immunodeficiency virus, hepatitis C virus, and hepatitis B virus by providing sufficient access to sterile syringes to obviate the need for sharing blood-contaminated syringes. In at least two states (New York and Connecticut), the change in legislation was accompanied by successful impact evaluations showing reductions in syringe sharing without increasing harm.110 California passed legislation (Senate Bill [SB] 1159) in 2004 to create a pilot disease prevention demonstration project (DPDP) between January 1, 2005 and December 31, 2010 that would allow pharmacists to sell syringes without prescriptions. The bill mandated that a comprehensive evaluation be completed and submitted to the Legislature and Governo ...