With deadly diseases like HIV and hepatitis a real problem, Nevada is making a drastic move.
The state of Nevada just did something that is raising eyebrows across the nation, and even the world, and proponents hope it could help combat the transmission of deadly diseases like HIV and hepatitis A: they’ve announced the introduction of a vending machine that would dispense free needles to drug addicts.
The vending machines, which will be placed in southern Nevada, will be unveiled Wedneday and will resemble regular vending machines, except it doesn’t require money and dispense needles instead of snacks or beverages. Just push a button and a needle kit drops.
Each kit holds a box of 10 syringes, a rubber tourniquet, a needle disposal container, alcohol swabs, bandaids, and a pamphlet on where to find treatment. Medical professionals hail it as a great idea and an effective way to combat the spread of deadly diseases, which are often due to tainted needles.
“In an ongoing effort to reduce the transmission of bloodborne infections and their related health complications to people who share needles, the Southern Nevada Health District and Trac-B Exchange, in collaboration with the Nevada AIDS Research and Education Society (NARES), launched Southern Nevada’s first comprehensive needle exchange program, including a delivery component brand new to the United States-vending machines,” the Southern Nevada Health District said in a statement. “The implementation of the needle exchange program and vending machine pilot program is the result of efforts by the Health District, the Harm Reduction CenterLV and Trac-B Exchange in collaboration with NARES. People using the new needle exchange vending machines are required to register at Trac-B Exchange, as well as with community partners who are contracted with Trac-B to provide services.”