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Harm Reduction

Harm reduction services help to prevent the transmission of blood-borne infections (i.e. HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C) and reduce the health risks of drug use.

Where to get Naloxone in Renfrew County and District

Harm Reduction Supply Locations

Needle Drop-Off Locations

 Please feel free to reach out to our e-mail at harmreduction@rcdhu.com, for any questions pertaining to harm reduction.

The health unit and partner organizations provide sterile, single use injection equipment for injection drug users at the following locations.  Sharps containers for used supplies, which can be returned for safe disposal are also provided.

Individuals can access single use equipment for injection drug use, such as

  • Needles
  • Syringes
  • Alcohol swabs
  • Cookers
  • Filters
  • Tourniquets
  • Acidifiers

Resource Link: Ontario Harm Reduction Distribution Program 

Resource Link: Safer Injecting Pamphlet

The health unit and partner organizations provide individuals in the community who smoke substances with free safer inhalation supplies at the following locations.

Individuals can access supplies such as:

  • Bowl pipes
  • Straight pipes
  • Screens
  • Mouth pieces

Resource Link: Safer Crack Smoking Pamphlet 

Resource Link: Safer Crystal Meth Smoking Pamphlet

Resource Link: Ontario Harm Reduction Distribution Program

Naloxone, a life-saving medication that can temporarily stop or reverse an opioid overdose, is available for free without a prescription in Canada. Examples of opioids include oxycodone, morphine, hydromorphone, fentanyl and codeine. If you think someone is having an opioid overdose call 9-1-1, then give naloxone right away.

*Because naloxone doesn’t stay in the body very long and a person can overdose again, it is very important to call 911 for all overdoses*

Naloxone kits are available at the following locations to individuals 16 years of age and older that:

  • Are currently using opioids
  • Has had a history of opioid dependency or,
  • Is a family member or friend of someone who uses opioids

Resource Link: Prevent Overdose

Resource Link: Signs and Symptoms of Overdose

Resource Link: 5 Steps to Respond to an Opioid Overdose

Resource Link: Naloxone Demonstration Video

 

If you find a needle in a public place, you can call your municipality to find out about collection options.

How to dispose of discarded needles safely:

  • Treat all needles and paraphernalia as contaminated.
  • Find a sharps container or a thick plastic container with a secure lid.  Do not use a thin plastic container that a needle could pierce.  Do not use a glass container because it could break.
  • You can contact your local pharmacy to see if they offer free sharps container and disposal.  Sharps container are available at the Renfrew County and District Health Unit.
  • Remove the lid and place the container on a stable surface next to the needle.
  • Wear gloves (i.e. latex, rubber or leather gardening gloves). Gloves are meant to protect against fluid contamination, not punctures or cuts.
  • Do not re-cap the needle
  • Use tongs, pliers or tweezers to pick up the needle. Be sure to clean and disinfect the pickup instrument afterwards.
  • Pick up the needle by the plastic end (syringe).
  • Point the needle tip away from your body. Be very careful not to poke yourself with the needle.
  • Do not hold the container in your hand while placing the needle inside.
  • Place the needle point down into the container. Do not force the needle into the container.
  • Tightly seal the container.
  • Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer after removal of gloves.
  • Find the nearest needle disposal location. Do not put items in the garbage or recycling bin.

If someone has been poked or scratched by a needle, seek immediate medical attention. 

Important: If you have picked up used needles or other drug paraphernalia in your neighbourhood, please report these finds to Renfrew County and District Health Unit at harmreduction@rcdhu.com and indicate the following information:

  • Your name and contact information
  • What was found
  • How many
  • The exact or closest address to the pickup location

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Pembroke Office

TEL: 613-732-3629 or 1-800-267-1097

Renfrew Office

TEL: 613-432-5853 or 1-800-465-5000