ARCHES Report to Mayor and City Council

(2019)

On February 28th 2018, ARCHES received federal exemption from Health Canada, Office of the Controlled Substances, to operate a Supervised Consumption Services (SCS) facility in Lethbridge. This exemption was received in response to the growing opioid crisis in Canada, claiming a total of 2,138 lives in Alberta since January 1st, 2016.
SCS provide a hygienic environment for people to consume pre-obtained drugs under medical supervision. ARCHES SCS is the first, and remains the only, in North America to offer four modes of consumption, which include: inhalation, injection, intranasal (snorting) and ingestion (swallowing). There are 13 injection booths and 2 inhalation rooms in our medically supervised drug consumption room. SCS has four teams consisting of Registered Nurses, Licensed Practical Nurses, Primary Care Paramedics, Addiction Counsellors, Harm Reduction Specialists and Peer Support Workers. Together they function as a multi-disciplinary team, each within their own scope of practice and working together towards program objectives.
There is a substantial body of evidence identifying that SCS facilities reduce the risk of HIV/HCV transmission, increase access to health and social services including treatment, and reduce public drug consumption and related debris. ARCHES has operated the SCS in line with the objectives identified in the evidence. The following section outlines the efforts that ARCHES has made to meet these objectives in the last year and a half of operation.

ARCHES Report to Mayor and City Council

ARCHES Report to Mayor and City Council (352)

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