Do you know how to properly dispose of expired, unwanted, or unused medications? A recent client had some drugs that needed to be disposed of, and the FDA.gov site provided the following guidelines:
Guidelines for Drug Disposal
1. Read the specific disposal instructions which accompany the drug
2. Some drugs need to be disposed of by flushing.
3. Disposing of drugs other than by flushing:
a. National Take-Back Initiative, April 26, 2014, 10 am to 2 pm; collection site research link provides the nearest city and place to turn in your medication.
b. “Call your city or county government's household trash and recycling service (see blue pages in phone book) to see if a take-back program is available in your community.”
c. Check with your local police department for drug take-back information.
d. Talk to your pharmacist can provide you with disposal information and dispose of some medications for you.
4. “If no disposal instructions [are provided] and no take-back program is available in your area, throw the drugs in the household trash following these steps:
a. Remove them from their original containers and mix them with an undesirable substance like coffee grounds or kitty litter...”
b. Place the mixture in a sealable bag, empty can, or other container to prevent the drug from leaking or breaking out of a garbage bag.
c. Then protect your identity by removing your personal health information.
d. Use this method to dispose of over-the-counter medication as well.
Proper disposal of drugs help prevent harm to others, pets, and our environment.