Injection Drug Use in Indiana (2010) describes the health, social, and legal problems faced by injection drug users. The issue brief provides national and state-level statistics on the prevalence and consequences of substance abuse, in general, and injection drug use (IDU), in particular. It also suggests key prevention strategies for policymakers.
Substance abuse and addiction are major causes of preventable morbidity and mortality in the United States. In 2008 an estimated 22.2 million persons, or nine percent of the U.S. population ages 12 and older, were classified with the disease. In Indiana, an estimated 10,800 Hoosiers age 12 and older injected drugs in the past year.
All drug abuse has been proven detrimental; however, harmful outcomes are especially associated with IDU, particularly the high risk of acquiring and transmitting blood borne infections such as the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis B and C viruses (HBV and HCV) through sharing non-sterile drug injection equipment.
From a policy perspective, the implementation of comprehensive strategies is suggested, targeting the general population for primary prevention, current non-injecting drug users for secondary prevention, and injection drug users for tertiary prevention efforts.