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Monroe County Health Officials Considering Needle Exchange Program
Updated July 22, 2015 8:10 AM | Filed under: Health
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(MONROE CO.) - Monroe County health officials are considering implementing a needle exchange program.

Indiana State Department of Health data shows the number of reported Hepatitis C cases in Monroe County has increased by 55% from 2009 to 2014.

Hepatitis C rates are often seen as a harbinger for HIV because they are transmitted in the same way--through sexual contact or by sharing dirty needles.

Monroe County Health Department Administrator Penny Caudill says it is time for Monroe County to act decisively.

Caudill says officials don't want to wait until there is a "much larger problem" before taking action.

Counties must meet certain criteria before the state will approve a needle exchange program.

The Monroe County Health Board unanimously agreed to continue investigating injection drug use in the county.
If the state approved a needle exchange program, officials would have to find a way to fund it.

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