Practices that show potential to achieve desirable public health outcomes in a specific real-life setting and produce early results that are consistent with the objectives of the activities and thus indicate effectiveness.

Harm reduction and health services provided by syringe services programs in 2019 and subsequent impact of COVID-19 on services in 2020

Behrends, C.Z., Lu, X., Corry, G.J., LaKosky, P., Prohaska, S.M., Glick, S.N., Kapadia, S.N., Perlman, D.C., Schackman, B.R., Des Jarlias, D.C.

Release Date:

Peer Review Study

Outreach/ Education/ Communications
Healthcare Access and Quality
Tools Included
Outside U.S.
Network of people

Partnerships and Collaboration

This study describes harm reduction and health services provided by the U.S. syringe services programs (SSPs) in 2019 and changes in provision of those services in 2020. Many SSPs that offered health services in 2019 and remained operational in 2020 increased telehealth provision of mental health and primary care services, increased MOUD provision, and expanded harm reduction services, but most SSPs reduced or stopped on-site HIV and HCV testing. With the record high opioid overdose fatality rates in 2020, sustaining the trajectory of SSP growth and innovation leading up to and through 2020 requires ensuring adequate and flexible funding to support the life-saving work of SSPs in preventing future overdose deaths and outbreaks of HIV and HCV.

Resource Details

Outcomes of Interest

Reduction of Health Disparities

Priority Population(s)

People With Substance Use Disorders

Setting(s) of Implementation


Geographic Area of Implementation

Implementation Period