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IRIN Examines Research On Syringe Design, Prevention Of HIV

IRIN examines recent research that shows that differences in the design of syringes “can be ‘dramatic’ and may slow the spread of HIV infections.” The news service writes, “Better syringe design could ‘nearly eradicate global HIV [injecting drug user-related] infections within eight years,’ according to the U.S.-based health consultancy RTI International, based on research it published [recently].” IRIN outlines some differences in syringe designs, noting, “By reducing the amount of retained fluid, some researchers say the risk of passing on blood-borne diseases is also reduced.” The news service highlights the issue of access to “‘harm reduction’ projects aiming to minimize damage from injecting drugs globally,” discusses skepticism over the approach, and profiles a pilot program in Vietnam, writing, “PSI set up the country’s first ‘social marketing’ (marketing for the good of society) pilot project in 2012, studying the habits of people who inject drugs in the country’s two most populous cities, Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi” (Brown, 9/12).