Minimizing harm for those who use drugs with the goal of keeping people alive
Harm reduction refers to a range of services and policies that lessen the adverse consequences of drug use and protect public health. Harm reduction acknowledges that some people are not able or willing to stop using drugs, and that steps can be taken to reduce the negative impact of drug use on society and the individual. Harm reduction is not the same as enabling--it is meeting people where they are and offering supports to help keep them alive.
Narcan is an opioid overdose reversal drug available as a nasal spray or injection. Anyone can purchase Narcan (also known as Nalaxone) at their local pharmacy. Contact your local CTC coalition to find Narcan trainings.
Clean needles are available for syringe drug users with the goal of reducing HIV and hepatitis C infections. The sites are just beginning to emerge in the UP. Contact your local health department for needle exchange sites.