Harm reduction for people who inject drugs and for people in prison

Safer drug use during the COVID-19 outbreak: harm reduction tips

Some of these are easier to do than others, and some may seem impossible depending on your current situation. Do the best you can. Reach out to friends, harm reduction, syringe service providers (SSP), and other health or social service providers to plan for what to do to so you can stay safe and take care of one another.

Providing care for people who inject drugs and forpeople in prison

Practical tips for harm reduction and OST clients and harm reduction/OST service providers is provided by UNODC .

Importance of harm reduction services during the COVID-19 crisis

A community statement from harm reduction networks include 12 demands for care of people who use drugs.

People Who Use Drugs (PWUDs) can be considered as a risk group in the COVID-19 epidemic. They often live in the margins of society with low or no access to housing, employment, financial resources, social and health care, and face systematic discrimination and criminalisation in majority of countries. 

Many have multiple health problems that can increase the risk of a (fatal) COVID-19 infection (including long-term diseases such as COPD, HIV, TB, cancer, and other conditions which reduce the immune system). 

Harm reduction services are often the one and only contact point for PWUDs to access the health service. They provide health and social services as well as other basic support, and function as an essential link to other live-saving services. 

Ref: The position of Correlation-European Harm Reduction Network and the Eurasian Harm Reduction Association on the continuity of harm reduction services during the COVID-19 crisis (19 March 2020)


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