Needle Exchange In D.C. Closes

By WAMU 88.5
|  Thursday, Feb 10, 2011  |  Updated 9:00 PM EDT
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Needle Exchange Program Closing in D.C.

NBCChicago.com

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Washington's largest needle-exchange program will close its doors this month.

Officials with Prevention Works, which gives clean needles to drug addicts to try to curb the spread of AIDS, said the needle-exchange program will close up shop on Feb. 25 after struggling for donations amid delays in city funding. High turnover among top managers is also a contributing factor, officials said.

The program began in 1996 as a project of the Whitman-Walker Clinic. It incorporated as its own organization and was the only provider of free needles for almost a decade due to a congressional ban on city funding for needle-exchange programs.

Last year, the program provided almost one-third of the free needles in the city, with staff handing out about 100,000 sterile syringes to 2,200 people.

Listen to the complete story at wamu.org

Copyright 2011 WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio. All Rights Reserved.

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