Protect your family and our environment from a common cause of accidents by safely disposing of medications you no longer use or need. Safely getting rid of unwanted medicines is an important part of being safe at home.
National Prescription Drug Take Back Month happens every October. The event aims to provide a safe, convenient, and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs, while also educating the general public about the potential for abuse of medications.
- Many locations that take drugs back are permanent and offer drug take back every day of the year. So, anytime you have extra medicines you no longer need is a good time to properly dispose the.
- During National Prescription Drug Take Back Month, additional temporary drug collection location will operate at various times and locations throughout the month.
- Read more about why safe medicine disposal matters and what med you can take back.
Scroll down to find out where you can take meds back any time of year around Washington State.
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Why safe medicine disposal matters
Unwanted medicines left in the home endanger our children, seniors, and pets. About half of the 37,000 phone calls to the Washington Poison Center concern young children who have been poisoned by medicines found at home.
Prescription drug abuse is the fastest-growing drug problem in the country. Most abusers of medicines, including teens, get the drugs from a friend or relative, often without their knowledge.
Flushing drugs or discarding in the garbage sends them directly into our waters and surrounding environment.
Eliminating excess medication from the home can reduce the potential for unintentional injury or misuse and abuse.
Meds you can take back
Items Accepted at Take Back Your Meds: Over-the-counter medicines, Vitamins, Pet Medicines, Medicated ointments and lotions, Inhalers, and Liquid medicines in glass or leak-proof containers (up to 12 oz.).
- Note: Only law enforcement agencies and designated pharmacies can accept controlled substances (such as OxyContin and other pain relievers).
NOT Accepted at Take Back Your Meds: Needles/Lancets/Syringes, Thermometers, Empty containers, Bloody or infectious waste, Personal care products (non-medicated shampoo, etc.), and Hydrogen Peroxide.
- For any items you may have that aren’t accepted by the take-back program, visit the Take Back Your Med FAQ for a list of resources for safe disposal of a variety of products in your medicine cabinet.
Washington State Take Back Your Meds Locations
Washington Poison Center (WAPC) currently manages the statewide Take Back Your Meds programs. Takebackyourmeds.org helps Washington state residents locate safe locations to dispose of their unused, unwanted, and/or expired medications.
Some of the common locations that offer medicine return, include Bartell pharmacies, CVS pharmacies, QFC pharmacies, local law enforcement offices (police, sheriff, tribal), and healthcare centers and clinics. Note that many hospitals have suspended collection capabilities during the COVID pandemic.
Find a participating location nearest you below.
All counties drug take back locations
- Med-Project Medication Education & Disposal (search by zip code): https://med-project.org/locations/pierce/convenient-locations/
- Walgreen Medication Disposal location (search by zip code): https://www.walgreens.com/storelocator/find.jsp?RxDisposal=true
King County drug take back locations
- King County Secure Medicine Return, Find a Drop Box: https://kingcountysecuremedicinereturn.org/find-a-drop-box-map-2/
Skagit County drug take back locations
- Skagit County drug take back locations: https://www.skagitcounty.net/Departments/Health/medicinereturn.htm
Washington State drug
DEA National Prescription Drug Take Back Day
DEA will hold our National Prescription Drug Take Back (NTBI 21) on Saturday, October 23, 2021 – 10AM to 2PM. More info: National Prescription Drug Take Back Day (usdoj.gov)
National Drug Take Back Day
- 2022 Wednesday, April 27thNational Drug Take Back Day
- 2023 Thursday, April 27thNational Drug Take Back Day