Injection Drug Use Feed

November 03, 2010

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Assistant Secretary Dr. Howard Koh Highlights Drug Prevention Month

By Miguel Gomez, AIDS.gov Director

Last month, Dr. Howard Koh, Assistant Secretary for Health, spoke with R. Gil Kerlikowske, Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), about drug prevention during the observance of Prevention Month. You can watch their discussion at the ONDCP Web site.

I want to highlight that to help reduce the number of new HIV infections, the National HIV/AIDS Strategy calls for giving much more attention and resources to the populations at highest risk of HIV, including substance abusers. Among the many benefits of preventing drug use, before it starts or stepping in early before substance use becomes chronic, is reducing the individual’s risk of exposure to HIV and other dangerous infections like Hepatitis C. This highlights the complementary nature of both the National HIV/AIDS Strategy and the National Drug Control Strategy, and the government-wide efforts underway to implement both. Dr. Koh recently wrote an ONDCP guest blog post about this topic as well.

July 19, 2010

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International AIDS Conference Day 2: Dr. Koh Speaks with Dr. Jack Stein on Drug Control Policy

By Howard K. Koh, M.D., M.P.H, Assistant Secretary for Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Today is the second day of the International AIDS Conference Exit Disclaimer in Vienna, Austria. I am honored to continue to represent the Department of Health and Human Services and to be part of the U.S. Delegation at the 2010 International AIDS Conference.

Continue reading "International AIDS Conference Day 2: Dr. Koh Speaks with Dr. Jack Stein on Drug Control Policy" »

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Expanding Access to Evidence-Based Services for Injection Drug Users

By R. Gil Kerlikowske and Jeffrey S. Crowley (Cross-posted from the ONDCP Of Substance Blog and ONAP Blog, originally posted on July 16, 2010)

We have known from the very beginning of the HIV epidemic that sharing needles and other drug-related paraphernalia is associated with transmission of HIV and other infectious diseases including hepatitis B and C. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently reported that injection drug use accounts for 12% of new HIV infections each year in the United States. Globally, it is estimated that 5-10% of new infections result from injection drug use.

On December 16, 2009, President Obama signed into law an end to the longstanding ban on most Federal funding for needle exchange programs. The removal of this ban will aid local communities in their efforts to fund needle exchange programs. As a result, the Departments of State and Health and Human Services (HHS) have recently issued policy guidance for U.S. programs and global partners in the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) program interested in implementing syringe services programs (SSPs).

Continue reading "Expanding Access to Evidence-Based Services for Injection Drug Users" »

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