Harm Reduction Victoria

HRV News Feed April – June 2014

by loki on 09/09/2014


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Charles shaw interveiw header

The Charles Shaw interview was conducted by Dan in late 2013. Certain parts of the interview were published in “Whack!”magazine No. 31 as part of the “Emerging trends” issue, but due to size restraints we couldn’t publish it in its entirety. Due to popular demand, we have uploaded the entire transcript in its entirety for your reading pleasure. Enjoy!

The Charles Shaw Full Interview Transcript


(A NSW Health and VICE short featuring four Australians living with Hep C)
One of the people in the clip became involved due to an callout that we featured on our Facebook newsfeed!

——————————————————————————————————————new oxy formulation info

The best advice that we can give is to just swallow the pills. If you don’t reduce it to a fine power (which is going to be very hard) the slow release mechanism will be still be intact. Our understanding is that unless the pill has been filed to a fine powder, and then either soaked in a solvent or possibly an acid like vitamin C, the oxycodone remains mostly bound into the slow release polymer.

That means that even if you manage to get it into injectable form, it will still be released slowly into your system. So you might as well swallow it!

However, if you can crush it to a fine powder and you are intent on injecting, our advice is:

  • Add plenty of water (as diluted is better than concentrated, regardless of the drug)
  • Filter well, including wheel filter, if you can (because it is likely to help and won’t harm)
  • Inject slowly (because then you mix solution with blood and will be aware of pain or swelling or local reaction before too much has been injected)
  • Stop injecting if pain at injecting site (because solution may be leaking into tissues and/or may be actively irritating to veins)
  • Stop if chest pain/ breathlessness (because of risk of pulmonary embolus- or blood clot/ blockage in lungs)
  • Reconsider your options next time

Q: I’ve read somewhere that oxycodone, when swallowed, is stronger (twice as strong) than when injected.  Given the problems with the new formulation, maybe swallowing it won’t be very different than injecting it after all.  Is that right?

A: The bioavailability of oral administration of oxycodone averages between 60-87%, dependent upon individual metabolism. If you are towards the top of that range, then there wouldn’t be much difference in the amount of oxycodone in your blood stream between swallowing it and IV administration (which typically would result in 85-95% of the total dose reaching your brain).

However the onset of action is faster with an IV dose prepared from the “old” OC pills than when they are swallowed, and it’s this immediacy that people find rewarding.

The onset of action with the OP pills will be much slower than with the OC pills unless the person has prepared it in one of the ways that liberate the oxycodone from the polymer in the pill base. To extract most of the oxycodone from the pill base involves soaking in solvents, so a lot of people (especially street based users) won’t be doing it.

If you need more information on any issues you may be having regarding the new reformulation Oxy-Contin’s, please call us on (03) 9329 1500


Neurons to Nirvana.

neurons to nirvana movieThe movie explores the history of LSD, Psilocybin (Magic mushrooms), MDMA, Ayahuasca & Cannabis through a series of interviews with the world’s leading researchers, psychologists, writers & pioneers in psychedelic psychotherapy. The event will include a panel discussion providing an Australian perspective on issues raised in the movie. The panel will be hosted by Enpsychedelia podcast producer Nick Wallis and includes PRISM’s Martin Williams and Steve Bright, Tim Payne from EGA, Steph Tzanetis from HRV & DanceWize and  Australian Sex Party president Fiona Patten.

Tix are $24 or $18 for students, concession and pensioners can be bought at http://www.entheo.net

For Media Enquiries or Interviews please contact:

Nick Wallis /0438 783 070 / egamediacom@gmail.com


As Needle Exchange Programs Become Accepted, Intravenous Drug Users Are Pushed Out

By Jess Tilley

In recent months in the United States, heroin laced with Fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid analgesic considered 80 times more potent than morphine, began showing up in the Northeast again. As intravenous drug users (IDUs) are not told how much Fentanyl is mixed in, overdoses started to rise.

Harm reduction was built on the simple idea of meeting people where they are at.As someone who has spent nearly half my life advocating for the rights and safety of intravenous drug users, I hoped to see others jump into action as we once did.

Until recently moving back to the Valley, I was an overdose prevention coordinator in Central Massachusetts for one of the first Narcan pilot programs in the state. I am also the founder of the New England Drug Users Union – one of the five unions that make up the North American Drug Users Union Network – and an active member of the International Network of People Who Use Drugs.

During a recent conference call with other intravenous drug user activists, the group planned further talks to discuss how to address the spiked heroin. After 45 minutes with no planned immediate action, I snapped: I asked what was actually being done to reach the IDU community and educate them about the laced heroin? I was met with dead silence.

Inaction seems to be the method of choice for many now.

Read More 


News release – WHO Issues Its First Hepatitis C Treatment Guidelines

blood-virus_hcv9 APRIL 2014 | LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM – WHO has issued its first guidance for the treatment of hepatitis C, a chronic infection that affects an estimated 130 million to 150 million people and results in 350 000 to 500 000 deaths a year. The publication of the “WHO Guidelines for the screening, care and treatment of persons with hepatitis C infection” coincides with the availability of more effective and safer oral hepatitis medicines, along with the promise of even more new medicines in the next few years.

“The WHO recommendations are based on a thorough review of the best and latest scientific evidence,” says Dr Stefan Wiktor, who leads WHO’s Global Hepatitis Programme. “The new guidance aims to help countries to improve treatment and care for hepatitis and thereby reduce deaths from liver cancer and cirrhosis.” WHO will be working with countries to introduce the guidelines as part of their national treatment programmes. WHO support will include assistance to make the new treatments available and consideration of all possible avenues to make them affordable for all. WHO will also assess the quality of hepatitis laboratory tests and generic forms of hepatitis medicines.

Read More about the nine key recommendation


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