Syringe Exchange and Disposal

Syringe exchange and disposal is an evidence-based public health program designed to reduce the spread of HIV, hepatitis C and other blood-borne infections among people who inject drugs, their families and the larger community.

Services

  • New, sterile syringes in exchange for used ones
  • Wound care
  • Safer sex supplies

Staff routinely offer risk reduction counseling and referrals to medical care, housing, STD treatment, mental health counseling and alcohol and drug treatment.


Schedule

Download a printable flyer: English | Spanish

Monday

12-5pm | *Outside In, 1219 SW Main St

3-6pm | Clark County in Vancouver, WA, 3701 E Fourth Plain Blvd

Tuesday

12-5pm | *Outside In, 1219 SW Main St

7-9pm | SE 82nd Ave and Ash St, one block off Burnside – in the white van

Wednesday

12-5pm | *Outside In, 1219 SW Main St

3-5pm | SE 190th Ave, between Division St & Yamhill St— in the white van

3-6 pm | Clark County in Vancouver, WA, 3701 E Fourth Plain Blvd

Thursday

12-5pm | *Outside In, 1219 SW Main St

2-5pm | *Clackamas Service Center, 8800 SE 80th (off 82nd Ave & Cornwell)

2-4pm | 5411 NE MLK Jr. Blvd. (around the corner of NE MLK & NE Killingsworth)

Friday

12-5pm | *Outside In, 1219 SW Main St

2-4pm | 5411 NE MLK Jr. Blvd. (around t he corner of NE MLK & NE Killingsworth)

3-5 pm | Clark County in Vancouver, WA, 3701 E Fourth Plain Blvd

7-9pm | SE 82nd Ave and Ash St, one block off Burnside – in the white van

 

*Outside In & Clackamas Service Center exchange up to 50 needles per day.

 


More about syringe exchange

Is syringe exchange legal?

In Oregon, it is legal for a person over 18 years of age to purchase syringes without a prescription. Hypodermic syringes and needles are exempted from the Oregon drug paraphernalia law (ORS.475.525).

Why do we need syringe exchange in Multnomah County?

Drug use is a significant problem in our community with many negative consequences to individuals, families, and neighborhoods. In Multnomah County, injection drug use is one of the leading causes of HIV infection. Not only is the person injecting drugs at risk of HIV infection, but his or her sexual partners and unborn children may also be at risk.

Public health efforts to reach out with syringe exchange services to those who may not be able or willing to stop injecting drugs is one part of the solution. Our primary mission is to prevent the spread of blood-borne infections such as HIV and hepatitis C. Many government agencies and community-based organizations have recommended that one-time-only use of sterile syringes is an important strategy to reduce the spread of HIV, hepatitis C and other blood-borne infections. Some of these organizations include: the U.S. Public Health Service, the Institute of Medicineof the National Academy of Sciences, the U.S. Prevention Services Task Force, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Research Council, the National Commission on AIDS, the American Medical Association, and many others.

Do syringe exchange programs increase the amount of drug use?

In 1997, an independent panel assembled by the National Institute of Health issued a report stating that exchange services do not increase needle injecting behavior among current users, nor was it found to encourage people to start injecting drugs. In fact, syringe exchange has become a gateway for substance abuse treatment readiness and referral. In Tacoma, Washington, the syringe exchange program is the single largest source of treatment referrals in the entire county.

Does syringe exchange work?

Multiple studies have compared cities that have low rates of HIV infection among people who inject drugs with cities that have high rates of HIV infection among people who inject drugs. These studies found that the cities with low rates had started syringe exchange and prevention efforts early in the AIDS epidemic.

Economic studies examining the costs associated with HIV infection have found that the cost per HIV infection prevented by syringe exchange runs about $4,000 to $12,000—considerably less than the estimated $400,000 lifetime medical costs of treating a person who is infected.