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Pathway To Spirits Event

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Julian Flores
Julian Flores

Where To Buy Syringes In Minneapolis


Rainbow Health offers a Syringe Services Program (or SSP), called Mainline, that reduces the risk of getting HIV. We provide access to unused syringes, education, and HIV prevention and care services.




where to buy syringes in minneapolis



It is legal under Minnesota State law to purchase and possess unused syringes. Rainbow Health works with community partners including the Minnesota Department of Health to engage pharmacies to promote syringe access.


In Minnesota, state legislation, enacted July 1998, provided for voluntary pharmacy sales of syringes/needles without a prescription for an accompanying drug. The goal was to stem HIV transmission among injecting drug users (IDUs) by providing greater access to sterile syringes. We used a pre/post evaluation design to investigate the impact of less restrictive syringe/possession laws on IDUs' HIV-related syringe practices. Independent cross-sectional samples of IDUs were recruited from street sites and a correctional facility immediately before and 1 year after enactment of the laws. Of the 671 IDUs interviewed, 570 (270 prelegislation and 300 postlegislation) had injected at least once in the 30 days before the interview. IDUs were more likely to purchase syringes at pharmacies after enactment of the laws (odds ratio [OR], 2.66; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.83-3.85), yet did not change their behaviors regarding carrying unused syringes (OR, 0.90; 95% CI, 0.63-1.28). After adjusting for speedball injection and criminal history, syringe sharing decreased among IDUs (adjusted OR, 0.67; 95% CI, 0.45-1.00) yet syringe reuse remained the same (adjusted OR, 0.67; 95% CI, 0.40-1.11). Safe disposal of syringes did not differ significantly across the sampling periods (adjusted OR, 1.32; 95% CI, 0.84-2.06). Increased access to pharmacy syringes offers a first step at reducing HIV-related syringe practices but must be coupled with strong HIV prevention messages, drug treatment referrals, and safe syringe disposal options.


We offer a variety of harm reduction services. Our caring and judgment-free approach to providing services helps guide us to getting those we treat back to a healthy, addiction-free lifestyle.The Minnesota Pharmacy Syringe Access Initiative is a law that allows individuals to purchase and possess up to 10 clean syringes without a prescription. Unfortunately, this initiative is voluntary for pharmacies and their staff have the right to refuse the sale. Before attempting to purchase syringes from a pharmacy, we recommend calling in advance to see if they will sell without a prescription.Unused syringe donations are gladly accepted at both of our locations during clinic hours.


Did you know there is a safer way to dispose of your old medications instead of flushing them down the toilet? Sherburne County has three designated pharmaceutical disposal areas where residents may safely (at no charge) and properly dispose of pharmaceuticals: Sherburne County Sheriff's Office, Becker Police Department, and the Big Lake Police Department. These disposal areas are considered secure and they allow medications such as unwanted or expired pill, capsule and liquid prescription drugs. Please make sure that all liquid medications are in a leak-proof container.


Items that cannot be disposed of at these areas include: sharps or pointed items such as needles, chemotherapy medication, syringes, epi-pens sets and lancet sets. Also they cannot accept institutional items, and non-drug items such as glucose test meters, blood pressure equipment, etc.


Any county resident who uses sharps (needles, syringes, and lancets) when treating themselves for medical conditions such as diabetes are eligible for this free disposal service. Only household-generated sharps will be accepted at the facility, however. The facility cannot accept business-generated sharps.


Plastic utensils and straws are too small and difficult to sort at recycling facilities and there is no market for these items to be turned into new products. Additionally, if these items are littered, they make their way to waterways where they can harm the environment, including animals and humans.


For various reasons including funding, the syringe exchange had to shut down. Jack [Loftus] and I knew where to buy supplies and get naloxone, so we started giving people a number to a burner phone, and people started calling us. We grew pretty much only through word of mouth. People would text us, and we would drive to wherever they were after work [and] connect them with syringes and naloxone as well as protection and services if that was applicable. We just kept growing and growing, and eventually we were able to get some funding [and recruit more] volunteers.


Now we deliver Monday through Thursday, and also do street outreach seven days a week. Usually, two people go to a couple [of] different camps and distribute syringes and naloxone. There's been an explosion of people staying outside in different encampments that have popped up and the city is starting to crack down on them. I think today, one of the encampments that we go to regularly is getting evicted. Police are going to be coming and likely forcing people to leave, with no place to really go. They are just forcing people to move from one spot to another. They will probably destroy a lot of their stuff. A week or two ago, at one of the bigger encampments, [the police] threw away a lot of tents and blindly forced people to get out. That just leaves people in a horrible position.


There are also groups like [Minnesota] FoodShare that cook food every day. They were in existence before all of this, but because of the uprising, people who wanted to contribute got involved in groups like that, where now they're operating at a much larger scale. Because of all this, there's definitely been a large influx of mutual aid. And I really hope a lot of that can keep happening. 041b061a72


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