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How to (safely) dispose of medications


If you use prescription medications you’re not alone. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2016 nearly 50% of adults in the US reported using prescription medications in the past 30 days. This number only increases with age; 18% of children under age 12 reported using prescription medications versus 85% of adults aged 60 and older. With all these medications being prescribed, it begs the question: how can we safely dispose of our medications?  

Prescription Bottle Recycling 

Note: Bottles should be rinsed, and the stickers removed. Blister packs cannot be recycled and should be thrown in the trash. 

Prescription Take Back Sites 

Big Red Barrel Program 

  • The Big Red Barrel Program allows residents to safely and legally dispose of medication. Click here for more information, including a list of Big Red Barrel sites in Washtenaw County. 

Disposal Events 

  • Every so often a pharmacy or other agency will hold a medication take back event. 
  • National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is October 22, 2022 
  • Call your local pharmacy for more information 

Safely Disposing of Medication 

Flushing Medications 

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