§ Mr. Freeman
The report was published on 8 February 1990 and copies have been placed in the Library.
The report indicates that the involvement of community pharmacies in preventive health education activities for drug misusers could be an effective way of making contact with those who are at high risk of HIV infection.
We welcome this news and acknowledge the good will displayed by many pharmacists who are prepared to supply injecting equipment to drug misusers, give out information materials and offer advice. Where the report has identified problems hindering the involvement of pharmacists, we are considering ways of making progress.
Almost £15 million has been allocated to health authorities in 1989–90 for the expansion and development of drug services in the light of HIV. We would expect that money from this allocation could be used for both the provision of individual sharps containers for drug users to place their used equipment in, and also the provision and servicing of larger sharps containers sited in pharmacies.163W
Pharmacists' training needs are currently being considered by the Department in conjunction with the relevant professional bodies, and we have encouraged liaison between pharmacists and local drugs services through the drug advisory committees established in every health district.