Machine will help minimize the risks of HIV and hepatitis transmission
The Southern Nevada Health District (SNHD) will showcase the region’s newest public health vending machine as part of an innovative intervention program that minimizes the risks of HIV and hepatitis C transmission. The machine, which provides a variety of harm reduction products geared toward people who use drugs, will be unveiled November 21 at SNHD’s main public health center at 280 S. Decatur Blvd., Las Vegas, NV 89107.
Each vending machine provides harm reduction needs such as sterile syringe kits, hygiene kits, wound care kits, hormone injection kits, safer sex kits, pregnancy tests and nasal naloxone, all at no cost to clients. Naloxone is a medication used for emergency treatment of known or suspected opioid overdose.
The Decatur location will be the seventh for the needle exchange vending machines in Southern Nevada. Similar machines are located in other local venues including addiction treatment centers, community centers and primary care clinics. The machines are operated by the Trac-B/Impact Exchange Harm Reduction Program, which is the Las Vegas Valley’s only syringe services program.
The vending machine program was made possible by Nevada Senate Bill 410, which became effective in 2013. Syringe exchanges are not unique to Nevada; they are used throughout the U.S., providing clean, sterile needles while encouraging users to drop off used needles.
District Health Officer Dr. Fermin Leguen said, “Sharing needles remains a common practice among those who inject drugs and leads to an increased number of people with HIV or other bloodborne infections. SNHD is proud to work with our partners in helping reduce the harmful effects of substance misuse.”
The newest public health vending machine is the first to be located at an SNHD location, expanding harm reduction and disease prevention services already offered by SNHD. Nasal naloxone and fentanyl test strips continue to be available to the public at the SNHD Decatur Pharmacy and self-collected HIV tests are available by mail via the Collect 2 Protect website at https://www.southernnevadahealthdistrict.org/programs/collect-2-protect/
The Southern Nevada Health District serves as the local public health authority for Clark County, Boulder City, Henderson, Las Vegas, Mesquite and North Las Vegas. The agency safeguards the public health of the community’s residents and visitors through innovative programs, regulations, and initiatives focused on protecting and promoting their health and well-being. More information about the Health District, its programs, services, and the regulatory oversight it provides is available at www.SNHD.info. Follow the Health District on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.