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The Latest: New Mexico county tracks drug use with GIS map

August 9, 2019

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The Latest on a New Mexico county’s push to track found drug needles and syringes (all times local):

12 p.m.

Officials have launched a digital mapping tool to track the places where heroin needles and syringes are found in New Mexico’s largest city.

Bernalillo County officials say the app is part of a push to collect data and track drug use in Albuquerque and elsewhere in their jurisdiction.

They say volunteers, and city and county workers have collected about 13,000 needles since May 2018. A crew collected more than 80 Friday at an abandoned property in northeast Albuquerque.

Officials say they hope the data will help guide drug policy decisions and help avoid duplicating clean-up efforts.

A spokesman for Bernalillo County’s Department of Behavioral Health Services says he isn’t aware of current efforts elsewhere to use GIS mapping to track drug use, though other counties have attempted similar initiatives in the past.

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12:01 a.m.

Officials plan to begin using an app to track the number of heroin needles that clean-up crews collect across New Mexico’s largest city.

Bernalillo County officials say the app is part of their push to collect data on drug use in Albuquerque and elsewhere in their jurisdiction. They say volunteers, and city and county workers have collected about 13,000 needles since May 2018.

An app the county is launching Friday will include a live map, showing where needles and syringes have been collected, helping to show trends and migration of drug use.

The public can log clean-up efforts into the app.

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