Needle and Syringe Services are a public health measure to reduce the spread of blood borne viral infections (such as HIV and Hepatitis C) amongst injecting drug users and the wider community.
Accessing a NSP can be a positive way for people who choose to inject drugs, to reduce their exposure to associated harms, and increase their access to supports and services. NSP’s are a confidential and anonymous service, which provide:
- Provision of new injecting equipment
- Collection and disposal of used injecting equipment
- Education on safer drug use and harm reduction
- Information on mental and physical health support
- Referrals to a wide range of health and community services
Equipment provided for free includes needles and syringes, swabs, contraception, and containers for the safe disposal of used injecting equipment. Some consumables are available such as water ampules, wheel filters and tourniquets.
CHOPER – (after hours mobile needle & syringe service)
The Community Health Outreach Program Eastern Region (CHOPER), provides a free outreach mobile Needle and Syringe Service. The CHOPER team operate between 7.30pm to 11.00pm every night of the year, and will deliver clean injecting equipment and contraception, and collect used equipment for safe disposal.
As an NSP service, the CHOPER team provide harm minimisation information, along with education and referrals to other health and community organisations. The service covers a large area of the Eastern Metro Region, east of Camberwell and west of Lilydale and Belgrave. Call 0414 266 203, and either leave a voicemail during the day, or call as early as possible from 7.30pm onwards, to arrange for a meeting that same night.
Mobile Drug Safety Service
This multi-tiered role operates across the Eastern Metropolitan Region. The aims are to:
- Support NSP clients with specialised harm reduction, mental and physical health related education, informaiton and referrals
- Facilitate regular health promotion campaigns
- Build capacity with staff from community organisations to identify and respond to the needs of injecting drug users
- Liaise with GP’s and pharmacies to improve client access and support with pharmacotherapy
- Network with other government, private and NGO’s across the region and metro Melbourne to improve and promote harm reduction initiatives.
The Mobile Drug Safety Worker can be contacted by clients, service providers or general community members at the Box Hill office (Ground Floor, 43 Carrington Road), via reception on 9890 2220 or mobile on 0430 524 749 .
Syringe Disposal Hotline
Carrington Health operates a syringe disposal hotline, which responds to requests from the public in the event of discarded injecting equipment being found on private property. To access this service phone 0430 524 749 and leave a message with a call back number so that collection can be arranged. For discarded injecting equipment found on public land phone your local Council during business hours to arrange collection.
NSP Client survey:
Training feedback form:
– A guide for families affected by alcohol and other drugs