COVID-19 resources: harm reduction

This information is not regularly updated and this information should be considered archival. Please visit the sites below for the most current information on COVID-19. Visit our Substance Use and Harm Reduction page for groups and resources on harm reduction.


Please Read: As information on prevention, policy, and programs is rapidly evolving, these resources generally direct users to frequently updated sites, rather than single pages that can go quickly out of date. We provide evidence-based resources and encourage members to dig deeper as their mission/work requires. We are grateful to everyone as they do their best through this crisis and wish all well as we work within this extraordinary time.

Harm reduction for substance use and sexual health, including sex work


Substance Use

How to Spot Someone So They Never Have to Use Alone
This short video from CAPUD walks you through an explanation on how to support someone who is using alone to ensure they are safe.


Getting a Safe Supply of Drugs: The Clinical Guidance Risk Mitigation in the Context of Dual Public Health Emergencies from the BC Centre on Substance Use “aims to support individuals who may be at increased risk of overdose, withdrawal, craving, and other harms related to their substance use. As the effects of the [COVID-19] pandemic continue, the drug supply may become significantly more adulterated and toxic, based on limited importation and availability, and illicit substances may become significantly more difficult to procure.”


COVID-19 Guidance documents on service needs of people who use drugs:  At the request of the Government of Canada, the Canadian Research Initiative on Substance Misuse (CRISM) is rapidly developing a series of six national guidance documents.The guidance provided in these document is subject to change as new information becomes available and the landscape of the pandemic and public health responses evolve over time.


Health Canada toolkit: COVID-19 and substance use. This toolkit provides information to support health care providers to understand their options in providing care for their patients who use drugs during the pandemic and to help people who use drugs learn about services they may be able to access through a health care provider.


COVID-19, Substance Use, and Safer Supply: On-demand webinar series from BC Centre on Substance Use


BC Centre on Substance Use COVID-19 resource section, including Substance Use and COVID-19


Vaping, Smoking and COVID-19: COVID-19 spreads by droplets, including saliva, so it will spread by sharing cigarettes, joints, pipes (including pipes in pipe ceremonies), waterpipes, and vaping devices contaminated by the virus. Do not share your smoking, pipes or vaping materials.


Harm reduction resources from the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition that provide information for people who use substances and service providers. Includes safer drug use, sex work, prescription guidelines, public health practices, and more.


Safer drinking guide in light of COVID-19 from the University of Victoria. To learn more about harm reduction for alcohol, see our  Alcohol:Community Trends and Impact event page.


Intimate partner violence, substance use, and COVID-19
During COVID-19 and its aftermath it is important to consider the impacts of the pandemic and social and physical isolation on women’s health. This sheet explores adaptations to practice for service organizations and frontline workers, to respond to concerning trends in intimate partner violence (IPV) and substance use in the COVID-19 context.



Sexual Health including Sex Work

Safer Sex Guidelines for men who have sex with men, from Health Initiative for Men


Sex work and COVID-19: Guidelines for sex workers, clients third parties, and allies
Butterfly Asian and Migrant Sex Workers Support Network / Maggie’s Toronto Sex Workers Action Project, via CATIE.

Sex and COVID-19, from CATIE. These resources include information on maintaining your sex life while reducing risk of COVID transmission; how COVID is transmitted, preventing HIV and other STIs.

See all COVID-19 resource pages


PAN updates to members


COVID-19 Prevention and vaccine updates

HIV and Hepatitis C




Harm Reduction: substances and sex



Indigenous Communities and Cultural Safety


Prison Populations


Mental Health



Economic Response Plans


Funding sustainability for non-profits


Workplace Adaptation


COVID-19 Home

Reviewed/updated November 10, 2021