Over 5,500 needles distributed to Island drug users since April 2017

Pre-packaged harm reduction kits such as this are available for free at the Mindemoya satellite office of Public Health Sudbury and Districts.

MINDEMOYA – The Point satellite location in Mindemoya, located as part of the Public Health Sudbury and Districts (PHSD) office—which offers free harm reduction kits and acts as a used sharps drop-off location—is seeing roughly 15 clients a month.

PHSD public health nurse Stephanie Gray explains that anyone is welcome to the Mindemoya office for the free pickup of harm reduction supplies.

The pre-packaged safe injection kit includes 10 syringes, filters, steri-cups or ‘cookers,’ sterile water, alcohol swabs and a tourniquet. The pre-packed safe inhalation kit includes ‘stems’ (glass pipes), screens, push sticks, tubing and alcohol swabs.

“Anyone can walk in between the hours of 8:30 am and 4:30 pm and there’s no limit on supplies,” Ms. Gray says.

The Point also offers sharps containers to take home and a biohazard bin located at the office for drop off once the containers are full.

If someone is looking for larger quantities of supplies they can contact The Point’s main office in the Rainbow Centre in downtown Sudbury and arrange to have needles shipped in bulk to Mindemoya. They can do this by calling 1-866-522-9200, ext. 778.

The public health office has been offering these services since April of 2017 and is pleased with the numbers so far. Word has spread mainly by word of mouth, Ms. Gray shares. Since the offices began offering these services, 5,595 needles have been distributed through the pre-packaged kits.

Naloxone kits, as well as the training for administering the life-saving drug, is also available at the Mindemoya office and Ms. Gray urges Island residents to stop by and pick up a kit.

Last week, CBC Sudbury reported that 2.5 million needles had been distributed through services like these across Northern Ontario in 2018.

The public health office is located at 6163 Highway 542 in Mindemoya, across from the D.A. Williamson and Sons hardware store, and is open 8:30 am to noon, closed for lunch until 1:15 pm and open until 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday.