Medication Turn-in Program

Posted in: Resources
Apr 25, 2014 - 8:00:00 AM

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The Post Falls Police Department is teamed up with the Post Falls Water Department, the Idaho State Police, Coeur d’ Alene Police Department, and several other agencies to promote the safe disposal of expired or unused medication.

The goal is to raise awareness and ensure the proper disposal of medications, which can pose health and environmental hazards when carelessly discarded. There are many hazards that unused and outdated prescriptions can cause to both our environment and citizens who potential misuse them.

Improper disposal of medication, by flushing them down the toilet or placing them in the trash, results in pharmaceuticals entering the environment, including our water sources. Recent studies show trace amounts of free-flowing pharmaceuticals in lakes, rivers and streams. Researchers are just now beginning to understand the contamination effects these pharmaceuticals will have on our environment.

A second critical factor is an alarming trend in the abuse of prescription drugs, including cold and cough medicines to get high. Recent studies show that medication is the second most commonly abused drug by teens. Teens are frequently turning to prescription and non-prescription medication to get high. The majority of these medications are obtained from home medicine cabinets without the parent’s knowledge. Although many citizens benefit from the use of medication, abuse of these drugs can have serious consequences including strokes, coma and even death.

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The Medication Turn-in Program is an excellent opportunity for all citizens, especially seniors, to clean out their medicine cabinets and dispose of expired drugs in a safe way. Removing such unwanted and unused drugs from the home eliminates the potential for accidental ingestion, poisoning, or worse.

 

Medications can be turned in anonymously. Although all medications will be accepted, we ask that you leave it in the original container. Any personal information can be removed from the label by blackening the information with a permanent marker prior to the turn in. All medication will be disposed of by approved incineration.

We will ACCEPT: ointments, lotions, liquids, medications from businesses/clinics, and inhalers.

Please NO: needles, aerosol, or thermometers.

As part of this effort, the City of Post Falls handed out flyers to local businesses and citizens in an effort to promote the proper disposal of both prescription and non-prescription medication.

Recommended medication safety tips:

  • Store medicine in a cool, dark, dry place.
  • Keep medicine out of the reach of children.
  • Check expiration dates on all non-prescription medicines.
  • Expired prescription drugs should be discarded quickly and safely.
  • Turn in non-prescription medicines without expiration dates that are more than six months old.
  • Medicines that have missing or illegible labels should also be turned in.
  • Do not flush medicines down the toilet. Drugs can wreak havoc with wastewater systems and septic tanks by killing the bacteria that breaks down sewage.
  • Giving prescription drugs to another individual is illegal. Reusing or recycling drugs can be harmful.
  • Do not discard medicine in the trash. Drugs disposed in this manner could be scavenged and illegally sold or poison wildlife.
  • To minimize risk, keep pharmaceuticals in their original containers.

For more information or questions, please contact the Post Falls Police Department at (208) 773-3517.