Oswego County Public Information Office, 46 East Bridge St., Oswego, NY 13126

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June 15, 2017

Oswego County Health Department Seeks Info on Littering of Used Needles and Syringes

To The Editor:

Dear Oswego County Residents:

As more and more people use needles and syringes to manage their medical conditions outside of hospitals and health centers, residents of many towns and villages have seen an increased number of improperly disposed of needles and syringes. Improper disposal of these medical "sharps" make all residents, especially children, vulnerable to serious injuries. To identify locations of these sharps, determine the needs of managing these medical wastes, and explore ways to make our community safe from medical-sharp-related health hazards, the Oswego County Health Department will compile information about improperly disposed of needles and syringes throughout the county. The Substance Use Disorder and Recovery Team of the County’s Poverty Reduction Task Force provided great assistance in developing this project.

The survey will be conducted between June 19 and Aug. 11, 2017. When you see needles and syringes that are improperly discarded in public places such as parks, playgrounds, and sidewalks, or private backyards, please dial (315) 349-3563. This number will allow you to leave a message. Please provide information on when and where you found the needles or syringe, and how many you found. The (315) 349-3563 number is for messages for this survey only. If you need to speak with a staff person, please leave your name and a phone number. We will try to make follow-up phone calls within 48-72 hours.

Due to resource restraints, we cannot come to remove the sharps onsite. Please follow these steps before you call the survey phone number:

With your support of this study, the Health Department will compile baseline data and develop a plan to make our community environment safe from needle and syringe-related injuries.

When you see sharps in your community, collect and dispose of them properly, and call (315) 349-3563. Together we will build a medical-sharp-safe community.

Jiancheng Huang

Director of Public Health

Oswego County Health Department

If you need more information about needle/syringe safety, please visit http://www.dec.ny.gov/chemical/9082.html or http://www.reachcny.org/HIV%20AIDS%20Programs/.

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