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Fax Facts - Sept. 19, 2019

Attention: Physicians, Nurse Practitioners, Hospitals - Emergency Rooms / Infection Control / Occupational Health, Walk-In Clinics

RE: Group A Streptococuss (GAS) Infections Among People Who Use Drugs

The Health Unit has identified a recent trend of GAS/INVASIVE GAS cases among people who use drugs. We are continuing to monitor the situation and are working closely with harm reduction staff at the Peterborough Aids Resource Network (PARN) to directly educate people who use drugs about the risks of skin infections.

Please help educate your vulnerable, at-risk patients by providing them with the following information:

• Never share drug-use equipment (needles, cookers, water, filters, tourniquets, pipes, straws)

• Avoid sharing cigarettes or personal items like towels, razors and unwashed clothes

• Regularly wash hands and bathe regularly

• Keep wounds covered

• Seek medical attention, especially if a cut or wound is red, swollen, painful and not healing

The following needle exchange sites are also available to reduce the sharing of drug equipment:

Lindsay:

• HKPR District Health Unit, 108 Angeline Street S. (Monday to Friday: 8:30 am – 4:30 pm)

• Ontario Addiction Treatment Centre, 40 Lindsay Street S. (Friday: 10 am – 12pm)

• Remedy’s RX on Kent, 108 Kent Street W. (Monday to Friday: 9 am – 5:30 pm; Saturday: 9 am – 1pm)

• Canadian Mental Health Association, 33 Lindsay Street S. (Monday to Friday: 8:30 am – 4:30 pm)

Haliburton:

• HKPR District Health Unit, 191 Highland St., Unit 301 (Monday to Friday: 8:30 am – to 4:30 pm)

Northumberland:

• HKPR District Health Unit, 200 Rose Glen Road, Port Hope (Monday to Friday: 8:30 am – 4:30 pm)

• Greenwood Coalition, 18 Ontario St, Port Hope (Tuesday: 12pm - 5pm; Wednesday: 2pm- 5pm; Thursday: 10am-12pm)

• Port Hope Community Health Centre (ask for kits at reception), 99 Toronto Road, Port Hope (Monday & Friday: 8:30am - 5pm; Tuesday: 7am - 5pm; Wednesday & Thursday 7am - 7pm)

• Downey Pharmacy, 3 King St E, Colborne (Monday to Friday: 9am - 9pm; Saturday: 9am - 7pm)

If you have any questions, feel free to contact a Nurse in the Communicable Disease Prevention and Control Department at 1-866-888-4577, ext. 1232.