Should The Canadian Government Fund Safe Injection Site?

Individuals who are addicted to illicit drugs are at higher risk of a fatal-drug overdose and blood-borne disease transmission. Drugs addicts annual mortality rate is 1.2% to 2.7%, which is about 17 times greater than non- addicts who are in the same age groups (Pfab, R, et al. 255). Also, people who are addicted to drugs often share equipment with others, and they sometimes administer drugs in public places. At times, some of the used equipment such as needles are left in public places.

This action is considered a public health safety issue because physical contact with the used needles can reason in the transmission of a blood-borne disease such as HIV or Hepatitis C. In 2003, an increased number of an overdose in relation to drug uses in Vancouver prompted the government of Canada to open its first safe injection site. This facility includes 13 spaces for safe injecting in order to help reduce public disorder =, infections disease transmission, and overdose that is associated with frequent drug users (Kerr, Thomas , et al. 2).

A safe injection site has health care professionals available at all times in case of a medical emergency, and it also helps to keep drug activity confined to one location. The government of Canada should fund safe injection site for people with drug addiction as it provides a safer environment for drug administration, which could be beneficial to both drug users and the general public.

The thought of the government funding supervised injection sites is highly debatable. Opponent argues that tax dollars should be used to create a more effective approach such as treatment centers and rehabilitation. However, people that are addicted to drugs often do not try to get help until they are ready to stop using drugs. Therefore, establishing a safe injection site will allow drug addicts to have to access health care professionals, so that other services such as referred to a treatment center is ready when they are ready to quit using illicit drugs. Opponents also argue that building a safe injection site is enabling the usage of illegal drugs within their community.

However, the location of most supervised injections sites was chosen due to an increase of drug-related incidents in that particular community. For example, the first injection site that was open in Vancouver was to increased drug users and drug-related incidents. Therefore, opening an injection site is not to promote illegal drug use with the community, rather it is to help reduce

the already happening drug-related incidents within the community.

Establishing a safe injections site will help to reduce the cases of fatal-drug overdose. For instance, drug users who use drugs in unsupervised spaces are deprived of seeking medical attention; therefore, allowing if not preventable overdose deaths to happen (Lefor). Therefore, having access to a supervised injection site with medical staff will help to decrease fatal- drug overdoses as medical care will be provided promptly in case of a medical emergency. For example, an increase in cases of fatal-drug overdose prompted the opening of the first injection site in Vancouver.

However, a population-based assessment was conducted in Vancouver after the opening of its first injection site yield an overall 35% reduction in fatal-drug overdoses in affected community (Marshall , Brandon , et al.). This result proves that a supervised injection site is a progressive response to fatal- drug overdoses as it successfully reduced fatal-drug overdoses in Vancouver.

A safe injection site will help to reduce and prevent the transmission of infection and diseases associated with unsafe drug administration. Common diseases such as hepatitis c and HIV are often transmitted when drug users share injecting equipment. Sometimes, the general public can come in physical contact with shared injection equipment if left in public places. Therefore, drug users having access to a supervised injection site will keep drug activity in one location, so the general public is not exposed to contaminated equipment.

According to Lefor (2019), supervised injection sites provide sterile equipment such as sterile needles during drug administration. This will help to prevent infections and disease transmission from occurring because drug users will be using sterile equipment instead of sharing and reusing equipment such as needles. According to Eggertson (2013), a study done about Vancouver’s harm-reduction strategy, including its inside locations, indicates a reduction in HIV and hepatitis C infection.

Overall, the provision of sterile equipment such as sterile needles, cookers, and tourniquets at supervised injection sites will aid to eliminate the risk of drug users contracting and spreading blood-borne diseases. A safe injection site encourages people that are addicted to drugs to get help and promotes safe environment for the public. A supervised injection site referred individuals to a variety of external programs, such as detoxification and addiction treatment programs (Kerr, Thomas , et al.). These sites provide help to people that are willing to get help.

According to Eggertson (2013), there is good evidence that supervised injection sites aid in entrance into treatment programs for individuals who are ready to stop using drugs. For example, people that are addicted to drugs are reluctant to getting help; however, having access to medical staff in a supervised injection might encourage them to get needed help.

Also, the staff at a safe injection site does not provide or administered illicit drugs but instead provides a safe environment for drug administration (Lefor). This means drug activities will be restricted to a designated area, which could result in a safer environment for affected communities because residents will not come in physical contact with used equipment such as used needles in public spaces.In conclusion, a safe injection site is a progressive response to the issues associated with people who are addicted to drugs.

A safe injection site is beneficial to both frequent drug users and the public because it promotes safer and cleaner communities. This is because drug activities will be confined to one area instead of it happening in public places. Also, the medical cost in the health care system will reduce because there will be fewer cases of drug-related incidents such as drug overdoses or transmittable diseases. This will allow more valuable resources to be available to the public to tackle other important healthcare issues. Promoting and ensuring good public health is the role of the government.

Therefore, the Canadian government must continue to play its role in promoting and ensuring good public health by issuing funding for safe injection sites.