Needle & Syringe Exchange

Published on: 19th July 2013 | Updated on: 15th March 2022

Examples of this service that have been commissioned locally are available on the PSNC online services database.

Tools and publications which may be useful to support the commissioning of this service can be found on the Service development tools and publications hub.

Click on a heading below for more information. 

Template service specification

Needle & Syringe exchange template service specification (Microsoft Word)

Needle & Syringe exchange template service specification (PDF)

Above is a nationally negotiated template service specification (developed and agreed by PSNC, the Department of Health and NHS Employers) and associated resources on the service. LPCs and contractors are able to negotiate to provide services in accordance with this specification where a local need for the service is determined. Alternatively LPCs, contractors or the service commissioner are free to develop their own local services in response to identified needs.

PSNC resources

PSNC Services Case Studies Hub

PSNC Think Pharmacy prospectus: Needle and syringe programme (June 2019)

PSNC Briefing 013/14: NICE public health guidance – Needle and syringe programmes (Apr 2014)
NICE has issued new guidance on needle and syringe programmes (PH52), and the majority of the ten recommendations include actions by community pharmacy, as most of the current services are provided by pharmacies. The recommendations will be taken into account by local authorities when reviewing and commissioning local services and this Briefing summarises the guidance and recommended actions.

The PSNC resource Community Pharmacy – at the Heart of Public Health describes the main public health services that are provided by community pharmacies and the evidence base for these services.

Other resources

PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) – The value of community pharmacy: full report and summary report.
This report contains a chapter which provides PwC’s assessment of the value associated with community pharmacy’s current role in providing needle & syringe exchange services in England.

The Department of Health, Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and Public Health England have produced a Widening the availability of naloxone (Updated Jun 2016) factsheet explaining the regulations that were introduced on the 1st October 2015 and how they can be implemented.

The Professional Standards for Public Health Practice for Pharmacy (Mar 2014) provide a framework to help pharmacy teams, commissioners and those contracting services to design, implement, deliver and monitor high quality public health practice through pharmacy.

Best practice guidance for commissioners and providers of pharmaceutical services for drug users (Feb 2006)

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