Introduction

An Introduction to Drug Checking and its Role in Harm Reduction

An Introduction to Drug Checking and its Role in Harm Reduction

Date

July 2022

Overview

Harm reduction is a set of strategies to help reduce health complications stemming from drug consumption. Harm reduction organizations provide resources that educate people who use drugs (and their family and friends) about safe drug use and help them make informed decisions without coercion, judgment, or threat of punitive action. This brief focuses specifically on the value of tools and services for drug checking, such as the distribution of fentanyl test strips and the use of advanced technologies (e.g., portable mass spectrometer). This brief also notes engagement models that a harm reduction organization may use when offering drug checking services. The document is intended for professionals who work in or provide ancillary services to public health and public safety, including harm reduction and justice programs.

This NIJ FTCoE brief was developed in collaboration with the Bureau of Justice Assistance’s Comprehensive Opioids, Stimulants, and Substance Abuse Program (COSSAP). COSSAP aims to reduce the impact of opioids, stimulants, and other substances through programmatic focus areas that include (but are not limited to) supporting access to treatment and recovery services in the criminal justice system and strengthening the collection and sharing of data across systems.



Funding for this Forensic Technology Center of Excellence report was provided by the National Institute of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice and the Bureau of Justice Assistance’s Comprehensive Opioids, Stimulants, and Substance Abuse Program.

The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this report are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Department of Justice.

Contact us at ForensicCOE@rti.org with any questions and subscribe to our newsletter for notifications.


Related Content

Legalization of Marijuana: The Journey of Marijuana Laws in Colorado and Ohio

← Back to ASCLD Train the Director Series This webinar originally occurred on April 5, 2022Duration: 1 hour Overview The decriminalization of hemp and legalization of marijuana is not a new topic across the United States. With 37 states allowing…
landscape

Harnessing Data to Implement Real-Time Data-Driven Overdose Response Strategies

← Back to MDI Webinar Series This webinar originally occurred on December 7th, 2021 Duration: 1 hour In response to the lack of real-time reporting of both non-fatal and fatal overdoses across the United States, the Washington/Baltimore High Intensity Drug…