ESAP Health Care Provider Letter

December 1, 2007

Dear Health Care Provider:

The Expanded Syringe Access Program (ESAP) is an important public health initiative in New York State that allows for the sale or furnishing of up to ten hypodermic needles and syringes at a time without a prescription to persons 18 years of age or older. ESAP is a public health measure to prevent the spread of blood borne diseases, most notably HIV and hepatitis B and hepatitis C. Participation is entirely voluntary. Pursuant to amendments made to the New York State Public Health Law in 2000, a licensed pharmacy, a licensed health care facility, or a health care practitioner who is otherwise authorized to prescribe the use of hypodermic needles or syringes within his or her scope of practice may provide needles or syringes through ESAP, if they have registered with the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH).

A study conducted by the National Development and Research Institute, Beth Israel Medical Center and the New York Academy of Medicine in 2006, strongly suggested that implementation of ESAP did not increase heroin use or the rates of drug injection or criminal activity.

If you wish to participate in ESAP, you must first register with the NYSDOH. Read all of the enclosed materials carefully before completing the Application for Registration form. A Directory Information form and, if requested, a separate registration form regarding the acceptance of used needles and syringes for disposal, will be mailed at a later date. Mail the completed Application for Registration to the address indicated at the top of the form. The Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement will review your application and will contact you when the review is completed. If your application is accepted and you are granted registration, you will be sent a certificate authorizing you to sell or furnish hypodermic needles and syringes without a prescription under the conditions set forth in ESAP. Any such sale or furnishing before the receipt of a registration certificate is prohibited.

If you have any questions about the ESAP registration process please feel free to contact the Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement at (518) 402-0707. For other program information, please contact the AIDS Institute at (212) 417-4770. Additional application forms can be downloaded from the NYSDOH website.


James Giglio, Director
Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement
Humberto Cruz, Director
AIDS Institute