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Monroe County Extending Needle-Exchange Program
Updated November 26, 2016 7:59 AM | Filed under: Health
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(BLOOMINGTON) - Monroe County is extending a needle-exchange program to prevent the spread of hepatitis C and HIV among intravenous drug users.

Monroe County commissioners on Wednesday renewed an agreement with the Bloomington-based nonprofit Indiana Recovery Alliance to run the program. The county has agreed to pay $12,000.

The Herald-Times reports Monroe County won state approval in December 2015 to operate a needle exchange.

Needle exchanges provide clean syringes to IV drug users to prevent needle-sharing that spreads diseases.

Monroe County Health Commissioner Thomas Sharp says the county is still facing a hepatitis C epidemic driven largely by injection-drug use. He says extending the needle exchange is the appropriate response to a public health crisis.

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