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New syringe exchange law causes hope and concern in Scott County

By Zoie Richey TheStatehouseFile.com  AUSTIN, Indiana — While walking down the streets of Austin, the sounds of dogs barking and sight of the trash in the ditches distract from the smaller, less noticeable objects lying on the ground: syringes. The bright orange caps are the only thing that help the needles stand out in the […]

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Attorney general at odds with governor over needle exchanges

By Quinn Fitzgerald TheStatehouseFile.com  INDIANAPOLIS – Attorney General Curtis Hill finds himself on the opposite side of Gov. Eric Holcomb and fellow House Republicans on the issue of syringe exchange programs. Hill testified against House Bill 1438, which would allow a county or city to enact its own syringe exchange program rather than have to […]

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Number of HIV outbreak cases in Scott County rises by four

Staff Report TheStatehouseFile.com  INDIANAPOLIS – Four additional cases of HIV have been confirmed since Dec. 4 in connection with the Scott County outbreak. The four diagnoses raise the total number of people in Scott County who have tested HIV positive in the outbreak to 188. The outbreak has been linked to shared needles among drug users. […]

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Number of HIV cases grows to 184 after testing blitz

Staff Report TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS – Three more people were diagnosed with HIV after a testing blitz in November – bringing the total in southeastern Indiana to 184. “While we hope to see no additional cases of HIV tied to this outbreak, we understand that we may continue to diagnose individuals with HIV infection who weren’t […]

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State agencies directed to act on recommendations made by governor’s task force

Staff Report TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS – Gov. Mike Pence directed state agencies Friday to act on the three initial recommendations provided by the Governor’s Task Force on Drug Enforcement, Treatment and Prevention. “I asked the members to act with urgency to develop recommendations to confront the scourge of drug abuse that is affecting communities all across […]

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More than a dozen counties are considering needle exchange

By Amanda Creech TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS – Three Indiana counties – Scott, Madison and Fayette – are taking advantage of needle exchange programs and more than a dozen others are looking to add their names to the list. “I think it’s safe to say that these communities as they move forward they represent a new generation […]

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Democrats call for detailed timeline on HIV outbreak

Staff Report TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana Democrats are calling on Gov. Mike Pence and the state Department of Health for more information on the timeline of the state’s HIV outbreak. The Indiana Democratic Party sent a letter to Pence Monday requesting a release of documents. In the release, Democrats say 65 days passed between the […]

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Madison County becomes second to launch needle exchange under new law

By Lesley Weidenbener TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS – Madison County will launch a needle exchange program to try to stem the spread of Hepatitis C spread through intravenous drug use. State health officials on Tuesday approved the Madison County plan under a law the General Assembly passed just this spring. It’s the first community to use the […]

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Indiana Chamber discusses state’s report card

By Katie Stancombe TheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana Chamber presented its 2015 national rankings report, more specifically known as the Indiana Vision 2025 Report Card, on Thursday. The progress plan was put into place in 2012 and includes 33 goals to achieve in four main areas: Outstanding Talent Attractive Business Climate Superior Infrastructure Dynamic and […]

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Video & story: In tiny Austin, needle exchange is controversial

Scott County Public Health Nurse talks about the Opana addiction from TheStatehouseFile.com on Vimeo. By Andi TenBarge TheStatehouseFile.com AUSTIN, Ind. – Until the news of the HIV outbreak in Scott County broke, the area’s drug problem was “a hush, hush thing.” That’s what Tammy Breeding says. Breeding, a single mother of three, lives in the […]

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