Unused Drugs / Medications
Proper disposal of your unused pharmaceutical drugs and even your over-the-counter drugs is important for two reasons:
- If flushed down the drain, drugs/medications dissolve in wastewater and often times only partially degrade in the treatment processes and pass through the treatment plant into the environment where they pollute our waterways and affect aquatic organisms.
- If not properly disposed of, your prescription drugs can end up in the hands of individuals who may abuse the drugs which can lead to drug addiction and even death.
"What should I do with my unused drugs and medications?"
Bring your unused prescription drugs and over-the-counter medications to one of the local, secure drug take-back sites listed below.
New drop-off locations are being added! CLICK HERE for a map of updated drop-off locations that are open year-round.
What items are accepted: Prescription medications, patches, ointments, medication for pets, and over-the-counter drugs should be accepted at most sites, but items like syringes and inhalers/aerosols are not accepted.
How to package items: Remove unwanted solid medications from their original containers, place them into clear, sealed plastic bags, and recycle the original container. If not possible, put unwanted solid waste in clear, sealed bags still in their original containers or simply leave the solid waste in tightly sealed in their original containers. All liquids should be in tightly sealed, secure containers, and those containers should preferably be in sealed, clear plastic bags. Contact your local Take Back host site for more information on accepted items and/or packaging.
TAKE-BACK EVENTS (Semi-Annual):
Twice each year on a Saturday in the Spring and Fall law enforcement agencies team up with local pharmacies and other organizations in over 100 Iowa communities to sponsor a special one-day collection of unused medicines as part of a National Drug Take-Back Initiative. For more information, please visit the State of Iowa Governor’s Office of Drug Control Policy website.