World AIDs Day - Needle Syringe Programs save lives and money
International Aids Day is 1 December.
This AIDS Day, Youth Projects salutes its teams in Foot Patrol and mobile Needle Syringe Programs. Youth Projects is fortunate to have employees that are amongst the most experienced and dedicated in the country.
When Youth Projects began, very few agencies were brave enough to adopt
Fear and prejudice dominated discussion of AIDS. Youth Projects was among
the very first groups to address the spread of HIV/AIDS through pioneering,
harm reduction services, such as needle syringe exchange programs (NSPs)
and comprehensive education on drug safety and sexual health.
Today, Youth Projects' drug safety programs are among the largest and most extensive in Australia through Foot Patrol, the Inner West Outreach Service,
North West Outreach Service, Glenroy fixed site, Clean-Ups and the Melbourne Drug Forum.
Youth Projects is proud of its significant role in one the most effective public health campaigns in history, reaching out to young people about issues many would prefer remained hidden.
It is largely because of this educative, harm reduction stance that Australia has stemmed the spread of AIDS and other blood borne viruses early on and is now
a world leader in this area.
In Australia, the HIV the rate of transmission is less than 1%, but it is estimated that it would be approximately 14 per cent if not for the early adoption of Needle Syringe programs.
These programs are estimated to have saved 2,500 deaths from HIV and averted 96,000 Hep C/HCV spending has been $243 million but yielded health cost savings of $1.28b in return.