Needle and Syringe Exchange Policies
"To reduce the spread of infectious diseases and other health risks among injecting drug users, as well as to reduce the risk to the general population by recuperation of used needles, syringe exchange programmes distribute injecting material and additional prevention material (cf. SQ23_2011_BE_02 – 03).
"In the Flemish community, the syringe exchange programme, which started in 2001, has been carried out by one regional and five provincial coordinators (one per province in Flanders), working as independents at the Medical and Social Care Centres (MSOCs) for drug users. The provincial coordinator builds networks of health care professionals, and pharmacists, who help him/her to distribute the injecting material, including syringes, filters, ascorbic acid, spoons (Exchange©), alcohol swabs, flasks of injectable sterile water, foil, bicarbonate, and containers to recover syringes.
"In the French Community, the needle exchange programme has been coordinated by Modus Vivendi since 1994. In 2008, the organisation of the needle exchange programme was reorganised, resulting in a lack of data for that year. Since 2008, injecting equipment has been offered through 16 official fixed-site and mobile services (with accreditation) located in Brussels, Charleroi, Dinant, Arlon, Namur, Liège and Ciney. On top, more than 10 other services distribute injection equipment. However, the number of syringes distributed within the later services is unknown. Finally, a network of pharmacists participating in the “Stérifix” project distributes “Stérifix” bags at the cost of 0.5 euro, including two syringes, two alcohol swabs, two dry post-injecting swabs, two spoons, two flasks of injectable sterile water and harm reduction information."
Deprez, Nathalie, et al., "2011 National Report (2010 data) to the EMCDDA by the Reitox National Focal Point" (Brussels, Belgium: OD Public Health and Surveillance, Scientific Institute of Public Health, October 2011), WIV-ISP/EPI REPORTS N° 002, pp. 149-150.