DiscoverPublic Health Out LoudNot Your Average Vending Machine: How Rhode Island Dispenses Free Harm Reduction Tools 24/7
Not Your Average Vending Machine: How Rhode Island Dispenses Free Harm Reduction Tools 24/7

Not Your Average Vending Machine: How Rhode Island Dispenses Free Harm Reduction Tools 24/7

Update: 2022-04-15
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When we think about vending machines, we imagine sugary drinks and candy bars. But in Rhode Island, vending machines are being used to dispense harm reduction tools that can help prevent overdose and reduce the spread of infectious diseases like HIV and hepatitis C. Through these vending machines, individuals can access free, sterile syringes, rapid tests for sexually transmitted infections, naloxone (Narcan®), wound care and hygiene kits, and fentanyl test strips any time of day or night.  

In this week's episode, you’ll learn about this innovative harm reduction strategy thanks to our guest experts from the Rhode Island Department of Health and AIDS Care Ocean State, a local non-profit connecting adults, families, adolescents and children who are affected by or at risk of HIV infection to quality housing, case management services, medical and nursing care, and prevention resources. Our guest experts are Katie Howe, the Prevention Program Manager for the Center for HIV, Hepatitis, STD, and TB Epidemiology; Katelyn Case, a Harm Reduction Case Manager at AIDS Care Ocean State; and Vanessa Perez, the Lead Prevention Worker for AIDS Care Ocean State.  

Where are these harm reduction vending machines located? How are the machines helping to link people who use drugs to critical resources and wraparound services to improve health and well-being? Download this week’s episode to learn more.  

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Not Your Average Vending Machine: How Rhode Island Dispenses Free Harm Reduction Tools 24/7

Not Your Average Vending Machine: How Rhode Island Dispenses Free Harm Reduction Tools 24/7

Dr. Jim McDonald and Dr. Philip Chan