Unsafe sharing of needles

Definition: The percentage of injecting drug users participating in surveys carried out at needle and syringe programs, who report re-using someone else’s needles and syringes in the last month.

Sources: Kirby Institute 2015, 2016, 2017a; Table S1.4.17.

  • In 2016, 19% of injecting drug users participating in the Australian Needle and Syringe Program Survey reported using needles and syringes after someone else in the month before the survey.
  • The proportion dropped markedly from 1995 (31%) to 1997 (14%), fluctuated between 1997 and 2010 (between 12% and 19%), then rose from a low of 12% in 2010 to 19% in 2016.

For more information, see Chapter 4.7 'Illicit drug use'; Chapter 7.19 'Specialised alcohol and other drug treatment services'.