Board of Health

Healthy Lifestyle

Health Commissioner

Health Department

General Information



(Except for legal holidays)
Canton City Public Health
420 Market Avenue North, Canton, OH 44702-1544

Individuals interested in making a donation can access the SWAP Amazon Wish List here


What is SWAP?

SWAP is Stark County’s needle (aka syringe) service program.  Created in partnership with Crisis Intervention and Recovery Center, OhioCAN Stark, Opiate Task Force and numerous other agencies, SWAP opened in June, 2017 in an effort to decrease blood-borne pathogen transmission among individuals who inject drugs. Hepatitis C is the most common blood-borne infection in the United States and is primarily spread through contact with the blood of an infected person making individuals that share needles and other drug paraphernalia at highest risk of contracting the disease. In addition, more than 8,000 people are newly infected with HIV through the sharing of contaminated syringes and needle works each year. SWAP is a harm reduction strategy aimed at reducing the negative consequences that are associated with drug use. At its core is reducing the transmission and acquisition of communicable diseases.

SWAP provides harm reduction services, access to care/treatment and new needles to individuals who inject drugs.

**NEW** The 2023 SWAP Annual Report can be viewed here.


For Participants:

SWAP is an anonymous program. Each participant is issued a card with a unique code that identifies them as a voluntary participant of the program.

Participants are asked to bring their used needles for proper disposal rather than flushing them down toilets, breaking off the tips or tossing them in random locations. Proper disposal of used needles helps protect our neighborhoods and community.

There is a maximum exchange of 50 syringes per client per week. Syringes from SWAP are for the participant’s use only. We ask that participants help spread word of the program and to encourage others to visit SWAP to get their own needles.

Under Ohio Revised Code (ORC) 3707.57, those with a participant card are protected from prosecution for possession of a needle up to 1,000 feet of the exchange site.  This law does not protect those who have any amount of illegal substance on them.


Wound Care:

Beginning March 18, 2022, CCPH will be offering a wound clinic for SWAP participants only. Wound assessment, wound cleaning, incision and drainage of acute abscesses, debridement of chronic ulcers, prescribing and dispensing of antibiotics, and specialized wound dressing application will be offered during SWAP on Friday’s 2:00pm – 3:30pm.

Left untreated, injection-related wounds may lead to more severe complications such as sepsis, gangrene, or endocarditis. By implementing this program, it is our goal that barriers such as costs, transportation, and stigma will be overcome and our patients will receive high-quality wound care.


FREE Services Offered:

  • HIV and Hepatitis C testing (when available)
  • Condoms and safer sex supplies - Follow this link to find out how to get FREE condoms.
  • Wound care education
  • Naloxone training and distribution
  • Safer drug use supplies and syringe access
  • Vaccination against Hepatitis A & B (when available)
  • Referrals to substance use and mental health treatment

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