HHS Releases Implementation Guidance to Support Syringe Services Programs

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued guidance regarding the use of Federal funds to implement or expand syringe services programs (SSPs) for people who inject drugs. The guidance was designed for programs directly funded by HHS interested in implementing or expanding SSPs. SSPs include the provision of sterile needles, syringes, and other drug preparation equipment and disposal services. In addition, SSPs might provide some of the following services: comprehensive sexual and injection risk reduction counseling; HIV, viral hepatitis, other STDs and TB screening; provision of naloxone to reverse opioid overdoses; referral and linkage to HIV, viral hepatitis, other STDs, and TB prevention care and treatment services; referral and linkage to hepatitis A virus and hepatitis B virus vaccination; and referral to integrated and coordinated substance use disorder, mental health services, physical health care, social services, and recovery support services.

Click here to read the HHS Implementation Guidance to Support Certain Components of Syringe Services Programs, 2016. The release of this guidance was part of a broader set of public and private sector actions to escalate the fight against the prescription opioid abuse and heroin epidemic; view the full White House announcement about this effort.

About Alyssa Kitlas

Alyssa Kitlas serves as a Program Analyst on NACCHO's HIV, STI, and Viral Hepatitis team. Her work includes projects on HIV, STI, and Viral Hepatitis prevention and care. Twitter: @AlyssaKitlas

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