Harm Reduction Tips for People who Use Drugs To Avoid COVID19

The following guidelines were developed by Russell Newcombe and Cheryl White (of 3D Research: russell.3dresearch@gmail.com) for dissemination among the global community.

1) WASH YOUR HANDS with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds every time you come into contact with others and after handling money or drugs packages

2) If you are a client of drug substitution programs, see if you can GET A TAKE-HOME PRESCRIPTION for a longer period and if you can skip appointments and urine testing for at least the next three months

3) If you are a regular user of heroin or other illegal opioids make sure you have up to date contact details for as many dealers as possible or consider going on drug substitution programs if available. Otherwise, BE PREPARED TO GO THROUGH INVOLUNTARY WITHDRAWAL and make sure you have all the symptom-specific medications and supplies you need for a detox

4) STOCK UP ON DRUGS AND USING EQUIPMENT if you can, for as long as you can

5) WIPE DOWN DRUGS PACKAGES/WRAPS with alcohol-based cleansers (at least 60% alcohol)

6) AVOID PUTTING DRUG BAGS/WRAPS IN YOUR MOUTH, VAGINA OR ANUS. If you must carry drugs in your body, clean with an alcohol-based cleanser before and after inserting them

7) PREPARE YOUR DRUGS YOURSELF, making sure you don't handle or touch other people's equipment or drugs

8) DON'T SHARE pipes, bongs, vapes, joints, nasal tubes and all injecting equipment

9) Be aware that COVID19 could make it difficult or painful to inhale smoke or vapour – so consider OTHER WAYS OF TAKING DRUGS including eating, snorting and UYB (injecting it Up Your Bum with a needleless syringe)

10) If you think you’re sick with COVID19 symptoms, AVOID GOING TO YOUR LOCAL DRUGS PROGRAMS – tell them you are unwell and ASK IF THEY CAN DELIVER SUPPLIES TO YOU

11) Be prepared for the POSSIBILITY OF NEEDLE EXCHANGES AND DRUG PROGRAMS CLOSING DOWN and follow the above steps to avoid running out of medicines, drugs or equipment