New Jersey Legislature Revises and Passes Bill to Allow Syringes to be Sold Without Prescription

The New Jersey legislature this week approved a bill that would allow adults to buy syringes without a prescription. The bill was revised when Governor Chris Christie issued a conditional veto, stating he would not approve the measure unless buyers were required to show a photo ID, or otherwise prove to pharmacists they are at least 18.

Public health groups back the measure, saying it will stem the spread of diseases such as HIV/AIDS and hepatitis C. Currently only New Jersey and Delaware do not allow over-the-counter sales of syringes, according to NJ.Com.

A news release issued by the Governor’s office said he “cited the need to weigh both unnecessary impediments for individuals who use injectable medications and the need for additional public safety measures to limit the distribution of needles or syringes used for non-medical purposes while also discouraging minors from buying needles or syringes.” He also called on the state Department of Health and Senior Services to supply pharmacists with information about drug treatment and syringe disposal.

Both the state House and Senate voted to amend the bill to incorporate Christie’s changes.

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