Good news for those of us clearing out a loved one’s home and finding lots of bottles of prescription medicines. NEVER flush them down the sink or toilet. Now there is (or soon will be) a new option–return to your local pharmacy.
I read this in the NY Times:
Concerned by rising rates of prescription drug abuse, the Drug Enforcement Administration announced Monday that it would permit consumers to return unused prescription medications like opioid painkillers to pharmacies. The move is intended to help reduce stockpiles of unneeded medicines in homes, which are often pilfered by teenagers. Under the new regulation, patients and their relatives will also be allowed to mail unused prescription drugs to an authorized collector using packages to be made available at pharmacies and other locations, like libraries and senior centers. The new regulation, which will go into effect in a month, covers drugs designated as controlled substances. Those include opioid painkillers like OxyContin, stimulants like Adderall and depressants like Ativan. Until now, the Controlled Substances Act allowed patients only to dispose of the drugs themselves or to surrender them to law enforcement. “This is big news and long overdue,” said Dr. G. Caleb Alexander at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. “It’s baffling that it’s so easy to get a prescription for opioids and yet so difficult to dispose of these drugs safely.”