Friday, October 29, 2010

Clean Out that Medicine Chest

Ever wonder what to do with old medications?  I'll bet you have some in a cabinet right now that you've looked at and thought, "One of these days I'm going to have to dispose of them.  But I'm not sure how or when."

Well, I've certainly had those thoughts.  So a few weeks ago I went to the police station and dropped off a bag full of half-used medicines and supplements that have been sitting around the house for a long time. I hadn't known what to do with them.  If I flushed them down the toilet I figured it wouldn't be too good for the fish (and for the people who eat the fish!); if I put them in the garbage they'd end up in a landfill and that didn't seem good either.  I had heard that pharmacies will take them, but I just never got around to checking that out.

When I learned that the Stanwood Police Station was a part of a pilot program, offering a drop-off spot for old meds, and that there were several other locations around the county that were also accepting them on a certain Saturday, I collected mine from cupboards in the bathrooms and kitchen and trotted them into town.

Police Chief Trenary was there to process my donation.  A green locked box, a little smaller than a corner mailbox, had already been filled and he was filling an additional box with the overflow.  Saturday's business was brisk; since the program began in December of 2009, they usually fill the drug box once a month.  Pretty good for a new program in a small town.

Before you empty your old medicines down the drain or into the garbage, why don't you see if there might be a similar program in your area?  If there is no such program, you might check out this website and get some pointers.

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