COVID-19: Suggested Health Department Actions to Support Syringe Services Programs (SSPs)

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In response to the global COVID-19 pandemic, health departments and community-based SSPs have requested recommendations for supporting syringe access and, in turn, people who use drugs (PWUD). Several harm reduction and public health partners have developed resources for drug user health response that recognize the additional burdens of housing insecurity, treatment adherence, reduced income (including sex work and other types of labor), chronic and compounding illness, including mental health conditions, and inadequate insurance coverage faced by many SSP participants and other people who use drugs.

This resource consolidates many of these recommendations and includes promising strategies and important considerations for health departments working with SSPs that were raised during a March 2020 NASTAD call with health department and community partners to discuss COVID-19 response.

Please contact Laura Pegram with any questions about this resource or to discuss ways NASTAD can support drug user health efforts in your jurisdiction.