Supervised injection facilities

Supervised Injection Facilities (SIF) are popping up all over the globe! The acronym implies exactly what it means. It is a place where heroin addicts can legally use the drug and also receive therapy. This was founded in order to counter the rapid growth of substance abuse globally. Nations such as Switzerland, Germany, Spain, Australia and even Canada have implemented this plan.

What is Supervised Injection Facilities?

Supervised injection facilities are legally sanctioned facilities where people can use intravenous or drugs administered through veins. Additionally, these facilities administer supervised injections providing sterile injection equipment, information about reducing the harms of drugs, health care, treatment referrals, and access to medical staff.

Some SIF facilities also offer counseling, hygienic amenities, and additional services. The philosophy of an SIF center is to reduce the health and societal problems associated with injection drug abuse.

Researchers believe the facility has helped lower deaths by overdose by 35% since its opening

Vancouver Supervised Injection Facility

How would that work in the U.S.?

These facilities do not exist in the United Sates. This is largely due to the opposition of using taxes to fund this endeavor. Many believe it is not fair to take the money from hard working tax paying individuals in order to help a person with a substance abuse disorder support their addiction. However, despite the large cost of this data from other SIF centers around the world the program is saving lives and weaning people of their addiction. The Vancouver SIF center is a model for other centers to study and shows signs of positive progress. Researchers believe the facility overdose deaths are down by 35% since its opening.

Not only are people dying less.  More and more frequent visitors of SIF facilities are entering rehabs and getting sober. Through their counseling and referral system, more addicts are getting the help. Also, incorporating SIF’s into the United States is highly controversial especially since heroin abuse growth is three times higher from 61,000 in 2007 to 435,000 in 2014 according to the DEA.

Let us know what your thoughts are on this approach on drug abuse control. Should the United States look into creating Supervised Injection Facilities?