Needle and syringe services

If you inject any substance, we are here to support you to stay as safe as possible and get the right information and advice.


Supporting you to stay as safe as possible

If you inject any substance, we are here to support you to stay as safe as possible and get the right information and advice. 

Accessing a needle and syringe service is an important way to stay safe if you inject. Using new, sterile injecting equipment helps keep you safe from infections, wounds and abscesses and helps prevent the spread of viruses such as HIV, hepatitis B and hepatitis C. There are also other ways we can help you.

Our needle and syringe services

There are lots of ways you can reduce harm, such as using the right sterile equipment, getting regular health checks and protecting yourself against any potential health risks. Here's how WithYou can support you if you inject any substance. 

If you inject substances, you can get free equipment (kit or works) from a needle and syringe service, which are advertised using the following sign:

Needle and syringe sign

You don’t need an appointment, you can just walk in and ask for what you need. 

If you don’t know what you need, we advise you to access one of the needle and syringe services delivered by a drug and alcohol service first. 

The staff there will be able to talk you through the different equipment options available to you and give you a demonstration on safer injecting techniques. They will also be happy to answer any questions you may have and discuss ways to help you stay safe. 

If you live in England, you can find a needle and syringe service near you using our needle and syringe service finder. This will direct you to needle and syringe services which are offered through substance use services and pharmacies. 

Find a needle and syringe service in Scotland


When you visit a needle and syringe service you’ll be able to talk to a trained member of staff in a private room.

They’ll ask you for some basic information, such as your name and date of birth, but if you don’t want to give your full name, you can give your initials instead.

They’ll ask you what you need and/or some basic questions about what you are injecting and where, so that we can make sure you are using the right equipment. 

We ask everyone to return any used equipment to us, or to a pharmacy, for safe disposal. Don’t worry if you forget to bring it - this won’t stop you from getting more equipment, but we do ask for your support in helping us reduce drug related litter as this can reflect badly on our services. 

You can be reassured that needle and syringe services are confidential services and your privacy will be respected. This is also the case if you are currently receiving treatment from us for your drug or alcohol use. Your treatment will not be at risk because you accessed needle and syringe services. In fact, we encourage you to discuss this with your worker so that they can ensure you are receiving all the support you need.

If you inject substances and share needles and equipment, you are at a higher risk of contracting a blood borne virus such as HIV, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C, and we recommend you get tested. 

All needle and syringe services provided through substance use providers will offer testing. This service may also be available in some pharmacies. We advise you to check with the individual pharmacy. 

Testing is carried out using dried blood spot testing where you prick the end of your finger for a blood sample. If you receive a positive result, we are here to support you. We work closely with NHS teams and wider agencies who provide treatment for anyone diagnosed with a blood borne virus and will make sure you receive all the support you need. 

Find out more about BBV tests here.

If you’re using heroin or another street opiate and want to go onto a script (prescription), we’ll help you get one as quickly and safely as possible.

Learn how we can help you get a script for a heroin substitute

The majority of needle and syringe services will offer vaccination against hepatitis B. Vaccination is usually delivered through a programme of 3 injections and will provide you with full protection against hepatitis B. If you would like to access vaccination against hepatitis B, please contact or drop in to your local needle and syringe service. 

The majority of drug and alcohol services, including needle and syringe services, can provide you with Naloxone. The Naloxone injection (Prenoxad) or nasal spray (Nyxoid) are life saving substances that can prevent overdose. They work by reversing the effects of opioid drugs such as heroin, morphine and methadone. 

We provide people who use substances with Naloxone and training on how to respond to an overdose situation. We also make Naloxone available to family members and friends. If you would like further information, please contact your local service.

If you would like additional advice and support we are here to support you. You can find out more information about the different treatment options on offer through our Treatment Options for Drugs and Treatment Options for Alcohol pages.

Alternatively you can contact one of our services using our service finder. If you don’t feel ready to talk to someone directly, you can also chat to one of our trained substance use workers via webchat. We’re online between 9am and 9pm Monday to Friday and 10am to 4pm Saturday and Sunday.

You can still message us outside of these hours and we will get back to you as soon as we open again. 

If you suspect someone has had a drug overdose

  1. Make sure it’s safe for you to approach the person

  2. Try to wake them by talking loudly to them and gently shaking their shoulders

  3. Check if they're breathing by looking to see if their chest is moving

  4. Put them in the recovery position 

  5. Call 999 for an ambulance, telling emergency services what you know

READ: Signs of an overdose


If you suspect someone has overdosed, it’s always best to administer naloxone. Naloxone reverses the effects of opioid drugs like heroin, morphine and fentanyl.

Drugs bought illicitly can contain a mixture of substances, including opioids, so use naloxone if you have it. If someone hasn’t overdosed on opioids, naloxone won’t harm them.

How to use a naloxone injection 

How to use a naloxone nasal spray 

Find a needle and syringe service near you

Find where to pick up free equipment and naloxone in England.

(Please note, as the results are provided by third parties such as the NHS, we recommend contacting services ahead of time to ensure they are still active.)

Opens in new window Find a needle and syringe service in Scotland

1-2 miles - Considered within walking distance threshold, however, cycling, public transport, or a personal vehicle is advised if no safe walking routes.
10-15 miles - Generally between a minimum of 30 mins to 1 hour travel time expected via public transport or personal vehicle. This may depend on form of transport, time of day and/or road layouts.
20-25 miles - Generally between a minimum of 50 minutes to 1.5 hours travel time expected via public transport or personal vehicle. This may depend on form of transport, time of travel and/or road layouts