Point for Point
Point for Point is a needle exchange intervention designed for implementation
in street settings. Needle exchange operates on the premise that increased
availability of sterile syringes can reduce the prevalence of needle-sharing
among injection drug users (IDUs). Needle sharing, the use of the same syringe
by more than one person, is associated with high rates of transmission of infectious
diseases, including HIV/AIDS. Point for Point relies on trained volunteers
to operate exchange sites at which sterile hypodermic syringes are exchanged
for used syringes on a one-for-one basis. Volunteers also distribute condoms
and provide exchangers with bleach, alcohol swabs, sterile cotton, and other
materials associated with safer drug-injection techniques. Point for Point
was evaluated under the name Prevention Point in connection with the Urban
Health Study (UHS), a long-term study of the IDU community in San Francisco,
CA. Data collected through UHS surveys revealed that Point for Point quickly
became the principal source of sterile syringes for San Francisco IDUs, and
that IDUs who reported regular use of the needle exchange were significantly
less likely to report needle-sharing than IDUs who did not use the needle exchange.
Participants also reported a significant drop in the median number of daily
injections, and the proportion of respondents who reported their first injection
behavior in the previous year dropped significantly. An overall decline in
reported needle sharing was also observed. (Watters, 1996; Watters, Estillo,
Clark and Lorvick, 1994) View
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