Syringe exchange program officially coming to serve Roanoke

ROANOKE, Va.- – Roanoke is now the fourth locality in Virginia to have a syringe exchange program. 

After 20 months, the Department of Health approved the Drop-In Center to be a syringe services site for its Comprehenive Harm Reduction program. The plan is to send mobile units to different locations around the city to connect registered participants with resources for mental health and various treatments.

"This may not be strictly substance abuse. This could be a diabetic who needs to get rid of and get clean needles for insulin or a transgender individual who needs clean needles for hormone injections. There's a large range. And the harm reduction center will focus on harm reduction as a whole and not just on a person who injects drugs," said Pam Meador, director of the Drop-In Center. 

Those with the center, a program under the Council of Community Services, say they are hoping to start the free, confidential services this fall.

About the Author:

Irisha joined the WSLS news team in January 2017 after spending four years as a reporter in Georgia.