What is the Ontario Harm Reduction Program?
OHRDP is a program that helps to keep communities safer and healthier by providing services that help prevent the transmission of blood borne viruses.
Harm reduction strategies surrounding drug use, recognize that abstaining from drugs may not be realistic or even desirable for everyone. Therefore, programs such as the needle exchange program have been implemented to provide sterile equipment so that drug use can be done safely and risks can be reduced to those individuals and the rest of the community.
The main services that harm reduction offers related to drug use include:
- Improving access to services providing sterile, single-use supplies
- Educating individuals about safer drug use practices to reduce risky behaviour
- Preventing transmission of blood borne viruses and pathogens between individuals (HIV, Hepatitis C, Hepatitis B, and various sexually transmitted infections)
- Reducing the risk of overdose
- Information sources to social services and health care agencies available