Indiana Heroin HIV Outbreak Raises Major Concerns

The huge surge of HIV cases in Scott County, Indiana is a major concern, considering that only three cases noted between 2009 and 2013. The number of confirmed cases now total 142. The state’s health commissioner, Dr. Jerome Adams, stated his shock in new cases are literally being reported each day. The chief medical consultant for the Indiana State Department of Health reported that four out of five people, infected with HIV, confirm having used an injectable drug. Some drug addicts have reused needles for months, and then shared those needles with other people.

Keeping Tabs on HIV and Hepatitis C

It’s critical for health officials of city or location to keep a watchful eye on the number and type of drug arrests. These numbers can help alert officials to possible community clusters where HIV might be on the outbreak. The entire state of Indiana may typically see about 500 new cases of HIV each year. The fact that Scott County has arrived at that number all by itself is what’s rocking the medical community. Opium is on the rise in Indiana and it only makes sense that Hepatitis C and HIV will be contracted as the result of needle sharing. Indiana has attempted to arrest the problem, at the very least make a dent, by implementing a limited needle exchange program.

In recent times past, the state’s governor was against such a program but has changed directions and given the program a 30-day grace period. Indian state lawmaker are considering a bill that will allow other Indian counties to implement a needle exchange program. However, it must first be approved by the state. There’s a major concern that the outbreak could spread to Kentucky and part of the Southern Ohio border. This can easily happen if infected people engage in unprotected sex.

Center for Disease Control Data

The CDC notes that there has been a 150 percent increase in outbreaks of Hepatitis C outbreaks from 2010 to 2013, which represents the latest data. This rise in cases can be traced to incidences of needle-sharing. Needle-sharing is an immediate indicator that HIV and Hepatitis C cases are likely on the increase.

Getting Help for Drug Addiction

Anyone struggling with drug addiction knows that life can be a nightmare. Sobriety and living clean can seem like an impossible goal to attain. However, the urge to get help is a first step in the right direction. Many people on the streets have given up and are often beyond the stage of wanting help. For those who take a chance at recovery, the right treatment and support can turn the situation completely around. Never give up, even if having tried and failed to recover time and again. The road back will be filled with bumps, pitfalls and setback. Recovery is always possible.


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