Where Can I Find Syringes in Tennessee?

Summary
  • Finding clean, sterile syringes in Tennessee is difficult.
  • In West Tennessee? Come visit our syringe exchange! We run rural/non-Memphis West Tennessee’s only syringe exchange. Get more information about participating in our syringe access program here: How to Request Supplies.
  • In Tennessee, but unable to visit us in person? We can mail you supplies. If you live more than 50 miles away from Jackson, you may be eligible to receive harm reduction supplies via mail. To learn more about this offer, visit How to Request Supplies via Mail.
    • In Tennessee? You may live near a Syringe Services Program. State-approved Syringe Services Programs (SSP) are great sources of free, clean syringes and other harm reduction supplies. See if one of Tennessee’s 15 SSP locations is near you by visiting Syringe Services Programs (SSPs) and Harm Reduction Programs in Tennessee.
    • Buy syringes online. In running our syringe exchange, we’ve noticed that very few participants have bought syringes online — for no good reason! Buying syringes online is affordable, discreet, and 100% legal. For help with online syringe-shopping, check out Practical Advice for Buying Syringes Online.
  • Visit local pharmacies. Here in Tennessee, pharmacies are legally allowed to sell syringes without prescriptions. Be prepared to visit several, as some pharmacists will inevitably turn you down.
  • Seek help from NEXT Distro, a mail-based harm reduction supply distributor. Based in New York City, NEXT Distro mails naloxone, syringes, and other supplies across the country, all at no cost to recipients. Sign up for NEXT Distro’s services here.
  • Avoid buying syringes from friends, family members, other drug users, or people who sell drugs. Sterility is never guaranteed, people could sell you used syringes, and it’s way more expensive than buying syringes from pharmacies or online retailers. Plus, SSPs give out syringes for free — you can’t beat that price.

Does your recent search history look like this?

  • Needle exchange near me
  • Free syringes near me
  • Non prescription syringes near me

… then you’ve come to the right place.

We know it’s hard to find clean, non-prescription syringes in Tennessee. Unfortunately, most people who use drugs don’t know where to find syringes in West Tennessee besides the black market.

We give out free syringes here in rural West Tennessee, including free NARCAN® kits in TN. But even if you don’t live near Jackson, TN — where we’re located — this resource lists all the possible ways to find clean needles near you in Tennessee. Good luck!

If you’re in West Tennessee, come visit us in Jackson!

Although we don’t have an office or a permanent physical location, we’re more than willing to meet you somewhere in Jackson to give you free syringes, naloxone, and other harm reduction supplies. To become our participant, follow these steps:

  1. Contact us through Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, our website, or by phone (731-803-0362).
  2. Tell us what supplies you’d like, or if there’s some other way we can help you.
  3. We’ll arrange a meeting place within Jackson city limits.
  4. Expect to answer about a dozen simple questions, which never takes longer than 2-3 minutes. We never ask for your full name, address, Social Security number, or any other personally identifiable information.
  5. We hand over your supplies, answer any questions you may have, then go our separate ways.

If you don’t live in West Tennessee, keep reading…

If you live near Memphis, Nashville, Chattanooga, Knoxville, Johnson City, Newport, or Tazewell, go to an SSP

SSP stands for Syringe Services Program; the Tennessee Department of Health requires organizations to submit applications and follow certain rules to become an official SSP. As of June 2022, there are seven organizations that run 13 SSP locations across the Volunteer State.

If you live in any of the cities above, congratulations! There’s at least one syringe exchange in your area.

Use our up-to-date list of syringe exchanges in Tennessee for every SSP’s address, phone number, hours of operation, social media profile, and website.

If you’re not fortunate enough to live near a SSP, you still have at least three other options left.

If you don’t live near any syringe exchanges, try buying syringes from pharmacies

Here in Tennessee, pharmacies can sell syringes without prescriptions. However, many pharmacists refuse customers who don’t have prescriptions for syringes, insulin, or injectable hormones, making it hard to buy syringes over the counter in Tennessee.

If you get turned down, don’t give up! We recommend visiting small, mom-and-pop pharmacies. In our experience, pharmacists who work for independent pharmacies seem to discriminate against hopeful syringe buyers less often than those who work for chain pharmacies (e.g., Walgreens, CVS).

Can you buy syringes over the counter in Tennessee?

Yes, you can buy syringes over the counter in Tennessee. You don’t need a prescription to buy syringes.

If you’ve visited several pharmacies without success, here’s your next-best bet:

Try buying syringes from online retailers

Buy your syringes online via online medical supply retailers such as OTCWholesale.com or DiabetesSupplies4Less.com. Although I haven’t tried OTCWholesale myself, I have used DiabetesSupplies4Less before with great results.

It doesn’t matter what website you choose, just make sure the seller you choose is legitimate. Amazon is another good bet.

A 10-count bag of insulin syringes usually costs around $5. But don’t buy syringes by the bag… We recommend buying at least a box at a time — boxes contain 100 syringes — which can range anywhere from $15 to $25.

We strongly recommend you buy syringes online if you can’t get them from a local SSP or pharmacy.

Can’t afford to buy syringes online? Ask NEXT Distro

We understand money can be tight sometimes. If you’re too much of a chicken-shit to buy syringes (a legal, legitimate medical supply) online — or perhaps you don’t have a debit/credit card or another way to pay for things online, such as a PayPal account — consider asking NEXT Distro to mail you supplies.

They’ll ask for your name, address, and other information. But don’t be scared to share your information with them. I’ve ordered dozens of care packages from NEXT Distro over the past three or four years and trust NEXT to the fullest.

Avoid the black market if possible

We encourage you not to purchase syringes from fellow drug users, friends, people who sell drugs, or family members. This is called black-market syringe access.

Black-market syringe access has several downsides:

  1. You won’t always know if they’re sterile or clean
  2. People could sell used syringes to you without your knowledge
  3. Black-market syringe access isn’t reliable or consistent
  4. In our neck of the woods, black-market syringes cost anywhere from $3 to $5/syringe on the black market — if you’re lucky, you might buy a 10-count bag for $8 to $10 (that’s $0.80-$1.00/syringe)
    • Pharmacies and online medical retailers only charge between $0.20 and $0.40/syringe

If possible, refuse syringes unless you get them from harm reduction programs (like syringe exchanges), pharmacies, or medical supply stores online.

Where Can I Get Free NARCAN® in Tennessee?

If you’ve made it this far, you’re probably interested in finding free NARCAN® kits in TN, or getting answers to one or more of these questions:

  • Can you buy NARCAN® over the counter in Tennessee?
  • How do I get NARCAN® in Tennessee?
  • Is it illegal to have NARCAN® in Tennessee?

We’ve created a resource to help you find free NARCAN® in Tennessee, including NARCAN® training in TN. Read “How Do I Get Free NARCAN® in Tennessee?” here.