Needle Exchange Program

In July 2011, Governor Jack Markell signed Senate Bill No. 13 in to law which removed the sunset provision and transitioned the city of Wilmington’s first and only Needle Exchange Program (NEP) from a pilot to a permanent program. The five and a half year-old program, which is being facilitated by Brandywine Counseling & Community Services and funded by the Division of Public Health, has helped prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS and has provided community outreach for high-risk individuals. The program operates out of a mobile van that travels to several strategic locations throughout Wilmington.

Studies conducted worldwide have concluded that needle exchange programs do not increase or encourage injection drug use. Conversely, these programs have been proven as an effective way to reduce the transmission of HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis.

The Needle Exchange Program provides health and social services to injection drug users as well as the general community. Services include: HIV and Hepatitis C testing, referrals for drug treatment, safe sex kits, referrals to social services, flu shots, and more.

In December 2011, the Needle Exchange Program began a new partnership with the Walgreens Pharmacy located at 9th & Market in downtown Wilmington to offer a Pharmacy Voucher Program. This program offers expanded access to clean works for current NEP participants. For more information about this program contact Brandywine Counseling at 302-656-2348.

For information regarding Needle Exchange sites and hours of operation, please visit:http://www.brandywinecounseling.org/find-help#needle

To be eligible for needle exchange services you must be:

  • An active injecting drug user.
  • At least 14 years of age.
  • A resident of the city of Wilmington.To exchange needles you must:
  • Turn in used needles for new needles. One used needle for each new one.
    (5 used ones = 5 new ones; 10 used ones = 10 new ones; etc.)
  • Bring old needles in an empty, plastic container
    (like a soda bottle or a sharps container)
    –OR–
  • If you do not have a container, bundle used needles
    with rubber bands in bundles of 5.
    All of the needles should be facing the same way.Locations of Needle Exchange Services:
    The service is provided on a mobile van at sites throughout Wilmington.
    It is best to call or access the website for information and to find the service site closest to you.

    Where to get more information:
    By phone: 302-656-2348, ask for the Needle Exchange Program

    Online:
     www.brandywinecounseling.org

    By mail:

    Brandywine Counseling & Community Services Inc.
    2713 Lancaster Avenue
    Wilmington, DE 19805