Needle and syringe programmes (update): call for evidence - outreach, vending machines, dropboxes and PIED users

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) is updating its public health guidance on Needle and syringe programmes: providing people who inject drugs with injecting equipment.

The update will examine new evidence as it relates to the current recommendations, and will also examine:

(i) Additional evidence related to providing needle and syringe programmes (NSP) to users of performance and image enhancing drugs; and

(ii) Evidence relating to providing NSP to young people under the age of 16.

View the review decision document.

NICE has contracted the Centre for Public Health at Liverpool John Moores University to review evidence relating to the following:

  • Drop boxes, outreach schemes and vending machines for out-of-hours provision of injecting equipment.
  • Providing NSP to performance and image-enhancing drug (PIED) users (including users of anabolic steroids and new products such as growth hormone, injected tanning agents and dermal fillers).

The update will examine the impact of NSPs on blood-borne viral infections, risk behaviours and entry into drug treatment (where relevant), and consider perspectives on barriers to and opportunities for service users to access NSPs and their views and experiences of these services.

As part of the call for evidence we are therefore seeking relevant evidence from researchers, practitioners and other organisations working in the field that is:

  • Published since 1990 or on-going research that relates to the areas outlined above. Evidence may be in published studies in journals, texts or monographs or in unpublished reports.
  • Based on quantitative, qualitative or mixed methods research, or economic evaluation.
  • Examines the effects of: (i) interventions or approaches involving the supply of injecting equipment; or (ii) harm reduction interventions provided by NSPs (for example, the provision of advice and information, onsite vaccination services, treatment for injection site infections).

This call for evidence is taking place between 21 January 2013 and 18 February 2013

Please use the relevant form from the website (either the published evidence form or the unpublished evidence form) and send any comments by 5pm on 18th February to Lisa Jones at Liverpool John Moores University ( ).

Please note that the following material is not eligible for consideration

(i) Promotional material.

(ii) Undocumented assertions of effectiveness.

(iii) Opinion pieces

(iv) Forms with attachments of published material, or hard copy of published material

For further information on the project, please visit our website.

We look forward to receiving information on this and thank you in advance for your help.

Please note that a separate but linked call for evidence relating to the provision of NSP to under-18s has been issued.

Instructions for Published material

Please send full reference details (which are to include author/s, title, date, journal or publication details including volume and issue number and page numbers) - NOT a PDF/WORD attachment or hard copy - using the Published material response form by 5pm on 18th February 2013 to Lisa Jones at Liverpool John Moores University ( ).

Instructions for Unpublished material

If you are aware of trials/ongoing research relevant to our questions which are in progress please could you help us to identify that information by providing relevant information such as a link to a trial registered with the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (Clinical Trials), or with the US National Institutes of Health trials registry. Please use the Unpublished material response form to send in details of any relevant evidence by 5pm on 18th February 2013 Lisa Jones at Liverpool John Moores University ( ).

Academic or commercial in-confidence material

If you wish to submit academic in confidence material (i.e. written but not yet published) or commercial in confidence material (i.e. internal documentation), please could you highlight which sections are confidential, for example by using the highlighter function in Word.  Such content will not be made public.  Please refer to section 4.4 of the Process guide for further information on submissions of confidential material. Please send any relevant evidence by 5pm on 18th February 2013 to

This page was last updated: 17 January 2013