Clinical history

The first generation of this prevention kit was conceived by a French medical doctor, Elliot Imbert in 1991, and experimented at Ivry-Sur-Seine (Val-de Marne, France). At that time, it was called "La petite boîte qui sauve” (literally: the little box that saves). Between 1992 and 1994, its distribution in pharmacies spread progressively throughout the country. It was sold for 5 French Francs (€0, 76). At this time, each pack contained two 1ml syringes, two ampoules of sterile water, two alcohol pads, a condom and instructions for use. In addition, it contained a small box used for syringe disposal.

A second generation of this kit (Steribox2) was launched in 1999, following a field study conducted by Apothicom. This study had shown that sharing of spoons and filters led to microbial infections which were not prevented by the first Steribox. For those reasons, the Steribox now contains two Stericup, each of which contains a sterile cooker, a cotton filter and a post injection swab. The latter item aims to prevent the use one’s thumb to compress the injection site. In French pharmacies, this pack is sold at a suggested price of 1 euro.

Prevention kits are distributed within the harm reduction framework to reduce hams linked to intravenous injection (HIV transmission, viral hepatitis, bacterial infections…). Though it is now commonly acknowledgeable that the Steribox plays a role in public health, in the beginning its introduction was commonly approved in France. Today, more than 3 million Steribox and Kit+  are distributed every year in the country.

[1] Kit+ contains the exact same items as the Steribox