As Chaffee County Public Health (CCPH) has continued its pubic health role to provide harm reduction efforts, it has placed safe needle disposal containers in both Salida and Buena Vista. In Salida, the needle disposal container is at the Salida Public Library.
“We placed another one in Buena Vista at the pharmacy. This is just one of our harm reduction efforts,” said CCPH Director Andrea Carlstrom. “What we were hearing was that the public didn’t have a safe place to dispose of their needles, so we were able to use grant funding to alleviate that barrier.”
CCPH recently launched a free, mobile health clinic providing harm reduction programming, STI/HIV testing and pathways to treatment, wound care, and other public health services. This resource, the Chaffee Community Clinic, is in Salida on Mondays from 12:00 noon to 4:00 p.m. at the Methodist Church and in Buena Vista from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Tuesdays at the Community Center.
Particularly related to harm reduction programming, these substance use, and recovery resources are available at the county level:
- Free Narcan distribution and instruction
- Free Fentanyl test strips and instruction
- Free sterile syringes
- Free syringe disposal
- Connections to peer recovery coach support through Peer Empowered Recovery Community Solutions (PERCS) – https://chaffeeresources.com/resource/ark-valley-recovery/
- Connections to Medication Assisted Treatment
- Connections to All-Recovery Support Group
Call CCPH at 719-539-4510 if you are interested in any of these services.
“Ensuring access to health and wellness services and supports, especially for those who experience the most barriers, is a top priority of CCPH and our local healthcare system,” said Carlstrom. “Through coordination and collaboration, we aim to meet people where they are at, assessing their needs in an environment that is comfortable to them and providing quality services onsite or making the appropriate warm handoffs to the programs and providers that can best serve them.”