Welcome to the State of California 

Process for State SEP Certification

Organizations that wish to add syringe exchange services to their current services for injection drug users (IDUs) and meet the minimum requirements outlined in Health and Safety (H&S) Code Section 121349 (PDF)Opens a new browser window. , may apply by mail or online.

Mail completed applications to:

California Department of Public Health, Office of AIDS
Attention: SEP Certification Program
P.O. Box 997426, MS 7700
Sacramento, CA 95899-7426

Apply online at: http://www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/aids/Pages/SyringeExchangeCertificationProgram.aspx

When an applicant files an application online or by mail, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), Office of AIDS (OA) has 30 business days from receipt of the application to deem the application provisionally appropriate or to notify the applicant of the reason(s) for rejection.

If an application is deemed provisionally appropriate by CDPH/OA, a 90-day public comment period is required prior to State Certification. The 90-day public comment period is initiated on the date CDPH/OA posts the following information on the department website:

  1. Name of the applicant;
  2. The nature of the proposed services; and
  3. The location where the proposed services will be provided.

The public may comment online about an application during the 90-day public comment period at: http://www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/aids/Pages/Applicationsopenforpubliccomment.aspx

As part of its evaluation of each application, CDPH/OA is required to consult with law enforcement and the health officer of the proposed location.

CDPH/OA will issue a final decision to certify or not to certify after all public comments have been considered. Additionally, CDPH/OA must consult with the local health officer, local law enforcement, and the neighborhood association (if one exists) of the proposed location, prior to issuing a final decision. This final decision will be made within 30 business days after the close of the 90-day public comment period.

Certification is valid for two years. 

Rejection of Application

Applications will be rejected for the following reasons:

  1. Information submitted in the application is incorrect or incomplete; and/or
  2. The applicant does not meet all the requirements listed in H&S Code Section 121349 (PDF)Opens a new browser window. ; and/or
  3. Evidence of projected harm to public safety, presented by local law enforcement official(s), is, in the department’s judgment, greater than evidence of projected benefits to public health.

OA will notify an applicant whose application contains any of the above deficiencies via mail and the applicant will be given 60 days to reapply to address deficiencies. 

Extension of Certification

CDPH/OA may reauthorize Certification under the following conditions:

  1. The SEP administrator contacts CDPH/OA via mail or email to request renewal of Certification for an additional two years prior to the end of the two year Certification period; and
  2. Local law enforcement and the local health officer are consulted.

Revocation of Certification

A State-certified SEP’s Certification can be revoked by CDPH/OA if the SEP violates the terms of Subchapter 15 or fails to comply with the provisions of H&S Code Section 121349 (PDF)Opens a new browser window..

Any person aggrieved by the CDPH/OA’s decision to deny, revoke or refuse to renew certification, or by CDPH/OA’s deemed denial resulting from the CDPH/OA’s failure to respond to the applicant’s request for renewal within 30 business days, may request a hearing.

A request for a hearing must be made in writing within 30 days of the date that CDPH/OA’s notification of denial or revocation was issued, or after the date of CDPH/OA’s deemed denial, if applicable.

The request for hearing must be made in writing to the address found on the website for the Division Chief of the CDPH Office of AIDS, and must clearly state the reason. The address is:

California Department of Public Health, Office of AIDS
Attention: SEP Certification Program
P.O. Box 997426, MS 7700
Sacramento, CA 95899-7426

Hearings shall be conducted pursuant to H&S Code Section 131071 (PDF)Opens a new browser window. .


Last modified on: 12/6/2016 10:52 AM