July 13, 2015

Proper Disposal of Prescription Drugs

pill-bottleProper disposal of prescription drugs is important to water quality.  Unwanted  prescription drugs thrown down the drain or toilet can end up in water ways, potentially harming aquatic life, recreational activities and the quality of source water used for your drinking water.

Additionally, leftover medications are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet.

Always refer to printed material accompanying your medication for specific instructions; however disposal methods can include:

  • Drop-off at an Iowa Pharmacy Association TakeAway location. Visit www.iarx.org/takeaway to find a participating TakeAway pharmacy.
  • Take unused medications to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office drug drop off box in the field headquarters’ lobby, located at 6023 NE 14th Street, Des Moines.
  • Dispose in the garbage by adding something to the medication to make it unusable or unpalatable (kitty litter to liquid medications, glue to pills, etc.). Package in an obscure container or non-transparent bag and place it in the trash.


Posted by: Laura Sarcone No Comments
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