As part of CARES’ on-going commitment to harm reduction and HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment, we began offering syringe exchange services out of our St. Johnsbury office in 2002. In 2013, we expanded those services to include mobile exchange in Rutland, and in 2014 we are looking to expand our mobile services to Newport and beyond.
Providing exchange services, as well as educational information, treatment referrals, risk reduction counseling, overdose reversal kits (Narcan/Naloxone), and free safer sex materials (condoms, etc.), is integral to our mission to combat HIV and AIDS in Vermont.
For information on how to exchange at our St. Johnsbury clinic either call (802) 748-9061 or click here. To schedule a mobile exchange in Rutland or the Newport area, please call (802) 345-4601.
If you would like more information about harm reduction and syringe exchange, please download our Fact Sheet.
Syringe exchange programs, or SEPs, are programs that take in used, dirty syringes and exchange them for clean syringes. SEPs are primarily aimed at injection drug users (IDUs), but can be used by people using legal drugs as well.
-- Syringe sharing carries a high risk of HIV exposure because HIV is easily transmitted blood-to-blood
-- Research shows that the presence of a SEP in a community can lower HIV infection rates by an estimated 30%
-- Providing a space for IDUs to safely dispose of syringes means that fewer used syringes will wind up disposed of in public places, decreasing public exposure
-- Syringe exchange users are more likely to enter drug-treatment programs, ultimately reducing the use of drugs in a community