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Harm Reduction

Meet Jack Fishman, the Man Who Invented Naloxone

Tessie Castillo | Posted 12.15.2014 | Healthy Living
Tessie Castillo

It's a tragedy that Jack Fishman died without ever knowing the extent of his impact on saving lives from overdose. But then again, he was a humble man. Perhaps he would prefer to remain the unsung hero of overdose prevention.

Drug Deaths in the Dam -- Unfortunate Accident or Intention to Kill?

Adam Winstock | Posted 12.04.2014 | World
Adam Winstock

As drug death alerts in Amsterdam show us just how a city can respond to a drug crisis, we ask: could someone be killing people who use drugs intentio...

Why Doctors Should Avoid Saying 'Drug Overdose'

Tessie Castillo | Posted 12.02.2014 | Healthy Living
Tessie Castillo

Because most people who are prescribed opioids do not see themselves as being at risk for overdose, they may decline naloxone even if it is offered by a medical provider. Talking about not breathing as a possible side effect usually grabs patients' attention and will make them more open to information on naloxone.

Synthetic Cannabis: It's Not the Real Thing. Buyers, Beware!

Adam Winstock | Posted 11.20.2014 | Politics
Adam Winstock

The laws of common sense and basic economic theory would suggest that the market for synthetic cannabis products should be dying. And yet, they represent the fastest growing group of novel psychoactive drugs reported to the EMCDDA.

Insite Loves People Right Where They Are

Mark Horvath | Posted 11.16.2014 | Impact
Mark Horvath

One of the most common phrases homeless services nonprofits or faith based ministries say is: "we build relationships", and many do just that, but often there is a catch or an agenda at the relationship's foundation.

Could 'Darknet' Drug Markets Be a Good Thing?

Adam Winstock | Posted 11.16.2014 | Technology
Adam Winstock

Does depersonalizing drug deals lead to a reduction in drug related risk violence? Could dark-markets help create credible on-line communities sharing harm reduction advice at point of purchase?

Harm Reduction - What Is Happening at the Federal Level

Tessie Castillo | Posted 11.10.2014 | Politics
Tessie Castillo

Advocates for drug policy reform are doing some admirable work at the state level to improve the health and dignity of people who use drugs. But things are rolling at the federal level too. The Harm Reduction Coalition discussed the issues they are working on.

Pill Injectors at Higher Risk for Hepatitis C Than Heroin Injectors

Tessie Castillo | Posted 12.20.2014 | Healthy Living
Tessie Castillo

This month the American Journal of Public Health published an article with surprising new findings: People who inject prescription opioid analgesics (...

With Rise in Heroin Use, We Need to Change Syringe Laws

Tessie Castillo | Posted 11.24.2014 | Crime
Tessie Castillo

Instead of creating laws that sound good but in reality cause more harm, we should encourage laws that provide incentives for people to do the right thing. Want drug users to clean up their used syringes? Protect them from charges if the syringes are stored in a safe container.

E-Cigarettes and Maintenance Therapy: A Smart Public Health Approach

Julie Netherland | Posted 11.17.2014 | Politics
Julie Netherland

E-cigarettes illustrate how harm reduction approaches to drug policy, particularly maintenance or substitution therapies, are at once both filled with promise and deeply misunderstood.

Police Forum Report Says Syringe Exchange Encourages Drug Treatment, Lowers Injury and Disease

Tessie Castillo | Posted 11.12.2014 | Crime
Tessie Castillo

Just when it seems like law enforcement will never buy into the idea of syringe exchange as a tool to reduce disease and prevent needle-stick injury...

Saving Lives By Mail

Tessie Castillo | Posted 10.07.2014 | Impact
Tessie Castillo

All the talk of community naloxone programs saving lives from drug overdose might leave people in states with no such programs feeling locked out of...

AIDS-Free Generation Will Not Be Achieved Without More Investment in Harm Reduction

David J. Olson | Posted 09.20.2014 | Impact
David J. Olson

In 2010, the United Nations announced that an AIDS-free generation was achievable if we focused on the most disadvantaged communities.

Opioid Maintenance Therapy: Questions and Controversies

Tessie Castillo | Posted 09.19.2014 | Healthy Living
Tessie Castillo

Opioid maintenance therapy, or using a legal opiate to reduce a person's urge to take illicit drugs, has long generated controversy.

Drug Relapse Denial and How it Kills

Tessie Castillo | Posted 08.25.2014 | Healthy Living
Tessie Castillo

Denial can be deadly. When teenagers aren't educated about sex because adults insist that it's not happening in schools, the outcomes are unplanned ...

Swift Action Needed in New York on Lifesaving Overdose Prevention Law

Robert Suarez | Posted 08.20.2014 | New York
Robert Suarez

This week Gov. Cuomo announced a package of legislation that seeks to address the drug-overdose crisis in New York, including reforming health insurance to make sure that people are not denied coverage for drug treatment. Not mentioned is a major bill that will immediately save lives by preventing overdose deaths from heroin and prescription opioids.

Top 5 Reasons Why We Need Over-the-Counter Naloxone to Combat Drug Overdose

Tessie Castillo | Posted 08.09.2014 | Healthy Living
Tessie Castillo

As drug overdose reigns as the leading cause of accidental death in the United States, naloxone has emerged as one of the most promising solutions t...

When to Kill the Bill: Dilemmas, Compromise, and Overdose Prevention Laws

Tessie Castillo | Posted 07.27.2014 | Politics
Tessie Castillo

How much compromise is too much? It's a question that plagues policy advocates when their champion legislation is watered down or stuffed with pork in legislative committees.

A Life of Dignitiy for All

Michel D. Kazatchkine | Posted 07.13.2014 | Impact
Michel D. Kazatchkine

Despite the many challenges that we face, I have always had strong confidence in what the people of this region can achieve by focusing together on our shared goal of ending these epidemics.

In Defense of Giving Naloxone to Cops

Tessie Castillo | Posted 07.06.2014 | Impact
Tessie Castillo

Naloxone programs represent a paradigm shift in law enforcement attitude toward drug users from a "lock'em up" mentality to an emphasis on the value of all human life.

Risk vs. Harm: Time for a Recalculation

Stephen Balkam | Posted 07.05.2014 | Parents
Stephen Balkam

Keeping kids safe from harm is different than ensuring an avoidance of risk. In certain circumstances, risk can be good.

Georgia Governor Signs 911 Medical Amnesty/ Naloxone Law

Tessie Castillo | Posted 06.25.2014 | Politics
Tessie Castillo

The amendment, added with no warning, threatened to curtail efforts to pass the life-saving bill and is an ugly example of how politics often come before people. But after some political squabbling, the Senate passed the bill last month.

What Do Prosecutors and District Attorneys Say About 911 Good Samaritan Laws?

Tessie Castillo | Posted 06.16.2014 | Politics
Tessie Castillo

While law enforcement, public health advocates, and people directly affected by drug overdose are front and center in these debates, state prosecutors and district attorneys also play a critical role in advocacy efforts -- often for, but sometimes against, these laws.

Can Safer Drug Use Be More Enjoyable Drug Use?

Adam Winstock | Posted 06.15.2014 | Politics
Adam Winstock

The results of the world's biggest drug survey came out on April 14.

Liquid Death From E-Cigarettes? You've Got a Long Way to Go, Baby

Dr. Amy Fairchild | Posted 05.28.2014 | Science
Dr. Amy Fairchild

If, as predicted, e-cigarettes result in double the number of liquid nicotine exposures this year, they are still a very long way even from making it into the top 25 causes of exposures.