Saturday 18 November 2017

Girl (3) is pricked by heroin syringe on Dublin Bus

Dublin Bus (File Picture)
Dublin Bus (File Picture)

A THREE-YEAR-OLD girl has been pricked by a heroin-filled needle on a Dublin Bus, sparking a call for the introduction of medically-supervised injection centres for addicts.

Tony Duffin, of the Ana Liffey Drug Project centre, said discarded used needles posed a massive risk to the public.

Yesterday, little Alysha Zambra got on a Dublin Bus with her mother Stacie where she was pricked by the needle.

She was brought to Crumlin Children’s Hospital and tested for HIV and other blood-borne diseases. Now her family face an agonising wait to see if she has contracted anything.

“We always go and sit at the back. I go in the middle and the kids sit either side of me,” said Stacie, from Crumlin.

“I just glanced out the window and then when I turned around Alysha’s finger was pumping with blood and I saw the needle on the floor,” she added.

Mr Duffin has long campaigned for medically-supervised injection centres so addicts can take drugs in a place safe for them and the public.

“The unfortunate situation of a three-year-old girl experiencing a needle stick injury on a bus is disturbing news,” he told the Herald.

“It is important that she and her family receive the support they need at this time, and hopefully all will be well,” he added.

“The risk of contracting a blood-borne virus from a needle-stick injury is low, but as the father of three children I understand that this is cold comfort when a family is faced with the uncertainty of waiting for test results.

“Unfortunately, unsafe disposal of drug paraphernalia is a serious issue for Dublin,” he added.


“The reality is that drug use is not going to go away, and we need to implement policies that work and are effective in reducing issues like unsafe disposal.

“We have been active in campaigning for the provision of medically-supervised injecting centres in Dublin, an evidence-based intervention which has been shown to reduce the incidence of unsafely disposed drug paraphernalia.

“We can make things better by focusing on policies which have been shown to work elsewhere.”

‘Alysha’s finger was pumping with blood and I saw the needle’

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