Needle Exchange

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Marion County is launching a needle exchange program that will enlist a vehicle the size of a small school bus to combat Indianapolis' soaring hepatitis C rate by distributing clean syringes and collecting used ones.

The vehicle unveiled Wednesday by the county's health department will begin visiting two east side Indianapolis neighborhoods next week. But it could eventually make stops in other neighborhoods, based on recommendations by police and health officials.

Louis Arevalo holds his Truvada pills at his home in Los Angeles, California on July 17, 2015. The drug Truvada, used to halt HIV infection, has been shown to be over 90 percent effective when used correctly.
Heidi de Marco / Kaiser Health News

An analysis released Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides further links between syringe services programs and preventing HIV. 

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Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

By the slimmest of margins, Tippecanoe County’s needle exchange program will survive for at least one more year.

A 2-1 vote by the county commissioners Monday came down only after Commissioner David Byers – who’d declined for weeks to state his stance publicly – voted in favor of a continuance.

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Evan Walsh

On a rainy day in Austin, Indiana, Brittany Combs, the public health nurse for Scott County, drives around in a white SUV. Medical supplies are piled high in the back of the vehicle: syringes and condoms, containers for used needles, over-the-counter medications.

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Jake Harper / Side Effects

Indiana’s top law enforcement officer, Attorney General Curtis Hill, has accused the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of manipulating facts in order to push a “pro-needle-exchange agenda.” He made the accusation in a statement released Tuesday.

AP

Today: "South Bend Tribune" political writer and columnist Jack Colwell joins us to talk about his latest column, also found on "Howey Politics Indiana," about what one author noted -- from an actual pre-campaign event in 2011 --  how seriously President Donald Trump takes everything, even jokes aimed in his direction.

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Nathan Forget / https://www.flickr.com/photos/nathanf/

A bill that would give counties the ability to set up needle exchanges without first getting state approval is one step closer to becoming law.

A Senate committee has approved the bill despite concerns from Attorney General Curtis Hill.

Joe Flintham
https://www.flickr.com/photos/joeflintham/

A governor-approved bill that would give Indiana counties and municipalities the ability to set up their own syringe exchanges passed its first hurtle, clearing the House Committee on Public Health Wednesday afternoon.