The Van Needle Syringe Program

Alert

June 22, 2018: Blue Heroin Alert Public Health Services has received multiple reports of overdoses attributed to “Blue Heroin”, a highly toxic fentanyl laced heroin, circulating the community.  This serves as an important reminder to the community that street drugs continue to be cut (mixed) with substances such as fentanyl.

There is no easy way to know what is in your drugs. You can't see it, smell it or taste it. Substances such as fentanyl and carfentanil can be cut (mixed) with other drugs. Even a very small amount can cause an overdose.

March 14 2018: Purple Heroin Alert: Public Health Services has received multiple reports of overdoses attributed to “Purple Heroin”, a highly toxic fentanyl laced heroin, circulating in the community. This serves as an important reminder to the community that street drugs continue to be cut (mixed) with substances such as fentanyl.

September 2017: Public Health Services has received reports of fentanyl laced methamphetamine circulating in the community. This serves as an important reminder to the community that street drugs can be cut (mixed) with substances such as fentanyl.

March 2017: Public Health Services has been notified of reports of a drug called “takeover” or "dirty fentanyl" which is crack laced with fentanyl. Reports are that this drug is causing an immediate and dangerous loss of consciousness. 

December 2016: Be aware that street drugs in Hamilton may contain a deadly opioid drug carfentanil. It is 100 times more toxic than fentanyl and is hidden in other drugs. It will cause more overdoses and deaths.

An opioid overdose is a medical emergency. Prevent opioid overdose death and save lives using the 4 C’s of safety:

  • Careful Use - Don’t use alone, go slow by testing the effect with small amounts first.
  • Carry naloxone - Get a FREE naloxone kit, and training at the following locations:
    • City of Hamilton Public Health Services Harm Reduction program: 905-546-4276.
    • Participating local pharmacies by calling the Drug and Alcohol Helpline: 1-800-565-8603.
  • Call 9-1-1 for every overdose. You, your friend or family member needs hospital care to survive.
  • CPR. Push Hard, Push Fast.

 

The Van Needle Syringe program provides needles, safe injection supplies and needle disposal.

The Van Needle Syringe program hours

The Van Needle Syringe program operates the following hours:

Monday to Sunday: 7 to 11 pm

Holiday closures and hours:
Monday, December 24 - 12 noon to 4 pm
Tuesday, December 25 – Closed
Wednesday, December 26 - Closed
Thursday, December 27 to Sunday, December 30 – regular hours 7 to 11 pm
Monday, December 31 – 12 noon to 4 pm
Tuesday, January 1, 2019 – Closed

Services are not available during the day. For information Monday to Friday 8:30 am to 4:30 pm call Public Health Services at 905-546-4276.

How to access the Van Needle Syringe program

Access the Van Needle Syringe program during operating hours by:

  • Calling or texting 905-317-9966

Leave a message and we will call you back. All services are confidential; we do not share information with others.

Call the Van early so we can get to you before 11 pm. The Van services are not available during the daytime.

We provide the following services from a mobile van:

  • Delivery of free needles, condoms and safe injection supplies such as alcohol swabs, sterile water, cookers, ascorbic acid and filters. Supplies are not available to diabetic clients.
  • Sharps containers and disposal of needles.
  • Counselling and referrals for drug and alcohol use, detox, health care and shelters.
  • Refills of overdose prevention kits.  Find out where to get new overdose prevention kits and training.
  • Safer inhalation supplies.

These services are offered to prevent blood borne infections such as HIV and hepatitis infections by helping clients avoid shared needles and equipment. 

Contact the AIDS Network to complete an application if you are interested in volunteering for the Van Needle Syringe program.