County, Calif., board of supervisors last week voted
3-2 to approve nonprescription needle sales in
participating pharmacies in the county, the Vallejo
Times Herald reports. The measure is part of a
statewide law aimed at lowering HIV and hepatitis
infections among injection-drug users by allowing individual
counties to participate in a pilot program through
2010 that allows pharmacies to sell up to 10
hypodermic needles to adults without a prescription.
Walgreens, Longs Drugs, and Ralph's supermarkets in
the county have agreed to participate in the program.
Supervisors voting for the measure say it will lower
health costs in the county by preventing HIV and
hepatitis infections. But supervisor Mike Reagan, who voted
against the measure, says it is just a
"feel good" way of addressing drug