New York produces heroin-use guidebook

Jan. 3, 2010 at 11:55 PM
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NEW YORK, Jan. 3 (UPI) -- A New York brochure advising heroin users on how to shoot up in a more healthful way cost taxpayers $32,000, officials said.

The city's health department's 70,000 fliers provide detailed instructions on preparing the drug and injecting it into the arm, the New York Post reported Sunday.

The health department said the brochure was distributed only to addicts and those at risk of becoming heroin users, and is helpful and necessary.

"Our goal is to promote health and save lives with this information," Daliah Heller, assistant commissioner for the Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Use Prevention, Care and Treatment, said.

"From a health perspective, there is a less harmful way to inject yourself," Heller said.

The 16-page guidebook entitled, "Take Charge, Take Care," has seven cartoon illustrations and features such advice as "Warm your body (jump up and down) to show your veins" and "Find the vein before you try to inject."

"It concerns me that the city would produce a how-to on using drugs. Heroin is extremely potent. You may only get the chance to use it once. To suggest there is a method of using that alleviates the dangers is very disturbing," said John Gilbride, head of the Drug Enforcement Administration's New York office.

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