Syringe Services Program

Syringe exchange programs are a standard public health practice both in the United States and around the world. Studies show that syringe exchanges are cost effective programs that reduce the spread of diseases in the community, and do not increase the use of injection drugs.

The Whatcom County Health Department offers the confidential exchange of new, sterile syringes and clean injection equipment in exchange for contaminated syringes. The Health Department offers this program on Thursdays from 2:30 - 5:15 p.m. (except holidays)

Services Provided

  • Education on reducing harms associated with drug use
  • HIV testing (blood draw, results in 7 days)
  • Hepatitis C testing (finger stick, results In 20 minutes)
  • Hepatitis A and B vaccinations
  • Naloxone Distribution Program
  • Other vaccines as available
  • On-site substance abuse treatment counselor

Harm Reduction Tips

  • Never reuse or share syringes, water or drug preparation equipment
  • Use a new syringe every time
  • Get a new syringes from a reliable source (syringe exchanges or pharmacy)
  • Use clean water
  • Use new filter (cottons) each time
  • Clean the injection site every time with an alcohol swab
  • Safely dispose of syringes after 1 use