What to do with expired pills
Do you have expired prescription pills causing clutter in your medicine cabinet? Maybe you’re hanging on to them simply because you’re not sure how to get rid of them. You may have heard that throwing them in the trash or flushing them down the toilet is a bad idea. It’s true. If you don’t get rid of your prescriptions properly, they can get into the wrong hands or in our water supply. So, what do to?
Why safe medication disposal matters
Since 2014, more than 7,000 pounds of medication and associated medical waste have been collected through the safe medication disposal program at Community Howard Regional Health.
“Safe medication disposal helps keep Indiana families healthy,” explains Nino Kristie Voskuhl, RPh MHA, Director of Pharmacy at Community Howard Regional Health. “For one, it decreases the risk associated with old medications being available for accidental ingestion and poisoning.”
It also has long-reaching effects outside of the household by reducing dangers in the community. “Safe drop-offs reduce the possibility of theft or misuse of controlled substances. They also protect the environment from the effects of medical runoff in wastewater and at trash disposal sites,” Voskuhl continues.
Where to go for safe medication disposal
“When we started offering medical waste disposal in 2007, there were no other readily available options,” says Voskuhl. “Today, we’re pleased that there are a number of opportunities in our community for safe disposal.”
Community Howard is holding a medication drop off event on Saturday, Dec. 2 from 9-11 a.m. in the circle drive at the Community Surgery Center, located at 3503 S. Reed Road in Kokomo. Participants can drop off over-the-counter medications, prescription medications, and pet medications in pills, liquids, ointments and lotions. All materials dropped off must be labeled to identify contents. Names can be crossed out to protect privacy. The drugs will be collected safely and processed according to Indiana law. No I.D. or signatures are required. This program is for residentially generated waste from Howard County residents only.
For more detailed instructions on medication disposal across the entire state, please visit the IN.gov Unwanted Medicine page.