A total of 198,347 syringes were dispensed in the five months between June and October this year, Health Minister Konrad Mizzi told Claudio Grech (PN) in reply to a parliamentary question.

The number dispensed from Mater Dei Hospital was 13,281, with 18,940 from Mount Carmel Hospital and the rest from health centres in Malta and Gozo. The highest dispensing activity was at Paola (50,200), Floriana (29,700), Gżira (28,978) and Cospicua (27,300).

Answering a supplementary question by Mr Grech, Parliamentary Secretary Chris Fearne sought to reassure him that the vast majority of syringes dispensed from hospitals were for diabetes use and not hard drugs. On the other hand, a high number of syringes dispensed from health centres were indeed for hard-drug use.

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