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Author Topic: Boston opening up first nurse supervised injecting room in the United States  (Read 4527 times)

Offline clinton (OP)

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   Boston charity plans to open US's first room for supervised heroin highs
The room would come with soft chairs, a nurse and basic life-saving equipment   
   


Health workers say they are fed up stepping over overdosed drug users Getty
A charity in Boston is planning to open the US’s first “drop in centre” where heroin users could ride out a high under medical supervision.

In a proposal that has sparked both praise and criticism, the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Programme (BHCHP) wants to establish a room with a nurse, soft chairs and basic medical equipment for drug users to be safe while coming down off a heroin high.


 

The group stresses that it does not want the place to become a location where users would inject. But it would provide a safe environment away from the streets while people rode out the drug rush.


The planned centre - which does not yet have funding - would be located at the junction of Massachusetts Ave and Albany Street, an area that is known as a place where opiate users congregate. Local people call it “Methadone Mile”.


The workers involved in the project say the idea was borne out of the experience of stepping over overdosed drug users as they made their way to the clinic’s offices.

“The epidemic feels like it’s been crescendoing on this block,” Dr Jessie Gaeta, the BHCHP chief medical officer, told WBUR radio. “We’ve got to try new things.”

She added: “It really is the epicenter of opiate overdose in Boston.”

There have for months been conversations among opiate addiction providers about creating a Supervised Injection Facility in Boston. Nine countries around the world have such facilities — where men and women inject heroin or ingest other illegal drugs, under the guidance of a nurse or other medical professional. The only one in North America is in Vancouver.

HCHP has asked local foundations to help fund the $250,000 cost of the “safe space.” A nurse and street outreach worker would move among 10 or so users to check breathing, other vitals and general health.

“If you overdose, we’re going to be able to respond immediately, save your life,” said Ms Gaeta.

We’re going to talk to you about treatment options, we’re going to offer it, ideally, on demand, like the moment you’re interested in methadone maintenance or Suboxone or a detox programme, we’re going to work like heck to get you in that day.”

 

 






« Last Edit: November 05, 2015, 12:15:09 PM by clinton »
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In the vein...

Offline jdub

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Definitely a good thing. I don't understand this part: "The group stresses that it does not want the place to become a location where users would inject. But it would provide a safe environment away from the streets while people rode out the drug rush."
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Offline DeadCat

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One can only hope that this is the beginning of not only "safe rooms" but state-provided H for local addicts. My home town. Gotta love  'em.
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Offline DeadCat

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Definitely a good thing. I don't understand this part: "The group stresses that it does not want the place to become a location where users would inject. But it would provide a safe environment away from the streets while people rode out the drug rush."

I noticed that as well and gave it a read. At this point it's just a safe place tp BE high. But like the needle exchanges I went to in Boston, it w a great place tomake connections and fnd out who had the fire.
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Offline clinton (OP)

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I see . They aren't actually injecting? Do you think it will even be utilized?
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In the vein...

Offline makita

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I'm thrilled at the progress of this idea but the whole "users can't inject here, only hang out after injecting" is some of the stupidest, most poorly thought out bullshit I have EVER heard.  If users do decide to use it as a warm, safe place they can hang out unmolested by police (which is a big draw I'm sure) but can't inject there, it will only mean they do it on the streets right by the building.  Since users usually OD right when the inject, not 5 mins later, it totally defeats the purpose of the place.

 If they have any brain cells about this policy they'll end up just having a bathroom like the needle exchange office in Chelsea in NYC, which every one will use to inject instead of outside on the street.  That place originally had a "no shooting" policy but so many people did it anyway despite them using blue lamps, auto-turning the lights off when the door locked, etc. that about 5 years ago they just ended up admitting to themselves that they were providing a good HR resource by having a safe bathroom with narcan on hand, that people are going to use there, and so they stopped getting in their way and instead rigged the bathroom with an intercom and auto-unlock mechanism so they can easily check on people if they've OD'd. 

I really hope it's a typo or misunderstanding on the part of the reporter, because if it's true it strikes me as the worst kind of pandering to the fear and opposition; something that SOUNDS like its meeting the desire to limit users in the neighborhood, while it actually making it more likely for people to be injecting in the streets.

You really can't do this halfway.  Either its a safe using room or its not.
« Last Edit: November 05, 2015, 03:16:07 PM by makita »
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something something drug war, social justice blah blah

Offline Chip

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I'm thrilled at the progress of this idea but the whole "users can't inject here, only hang out after injecting" is some of the stupidest, most poorly thought out bullshit I have EVER heard.  If users do decide to use it as a warm, safe place they can hang out unmolested by police (which is a big draw I'm sure) but can't inject there, it will only mean they do it on the streets right by the building.  Since users usually OD right when the inject, not 5 mins later, it totally defeats the purpose of the place.

 If they have any brain cells about this policy they'll end up just having a bathroom like the needle exchange office in Chelsea in NYC, which every one will use to inject instead of outside on the street.  That place originally had a "no shooting" policy but so many people did it anyway despite them using blue lamps, auto-turning the lights off when the door locked, etc. that about 5 years ago they just ended up admitting to themselves that they were providing a good HR resource by having a safe bathroom with narcan on hand, that people are going to use there, and so they stopped getting in their way and instead rigged the bathroom with an intercom and auto-unlock mechanism so they can easily check on people if they've OD'd. 

I really hope it's a typo or misunderstanding on the part of the reporter, because if it's true it strikes me as the worst kind of pandering to the fear and opposition; something that SOUNDS like its meeting the desire to limit users in the neighborhood, while it actually making it more likely for people to be injecting in the streets.

You really can't do this halfway.  Either its a safe using room or its not.

yes, I agree. it's a start but a poor one.
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I do not condone or support any illegal activities. All information is for theoretical discussion and wonder.
All activities discussed are considered fictional and hypothetical. Information of all discussion has been derived from online research and in the spirit of personal Freedom.

Offline DeadCat

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There is just too much social resistance to opening injection rooms even if tey don't provie heroin to users. It was so bad there it was intimidating for the other (senior citizens) to walk from the bus stop to the hospital entrance. Sometimes you gota take baby steps.

I used to live a few blocks from the corner thy mentioned. IT is richt at the methadone clinic at boston City Hospital. Not ony was there a methadone clinic,
 people would hang around there and sell their pain med scripst to users as well and of course, after they bought, they would go around the corner and get hign. Or they'd do their methdone then loiter around until someone sold them a few benzos to top it off and find a place to nod and the combinaton or the cold killed them.
 
Boston City is the place for the most indigent people of Boston. Methadone clinic, outpatient services, free prescriptin fils for the indigent, who would ask for meds they could sell right outstise as soon as they got them filled at the hopsital pharmacy.  A real black and gray mixed dope/coke and oil market indoor/outoor facility.

Giving users a place to be warm (Boston winters can be COLD) and have doctors and nurses there to prevent a nod from becoming a a death by OD or exposure is a very good frst step. I am sure they will have  socialworker there r close by who will help get indigent users detox beds and shelter beds as well.

It's not perfect but as I said in the face of resistance it is a big step forward.


PS. Hospital waiting room bathrooms are really good places to get high. Sick peope can take a Long time in the bathroom and nobody notices.
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