Medication Take Back Bin Expansion at Denver Health

April 27, 2022

Medication Take Back Bin Denver Health

How to Dispose of Old and Expired Prescriptions and Over-the-Counter Medications Safely

Saturday, April 30, 2022 is National Prescription Drug Takeback Day – a reminder to get rid of any unwanted or expired medications and to dispose of them in a safe and authorized manner. While drawing attention to a certain day intended to help you safely clean out your medicine cabinet is undoubtedly a good thing, Denver Health is making sure that this practice doesn't have to wait for that one special day every year. 

Denver Health now has eight locations where anyone can drop off old and expired prescriptions and over-the-counter medications safely year round.

The large, green Medication Take Back Bins are located in the lobby at each of the eight full-service Denver Health Pharmacies – including our newest location at the Outpatient Medical Center, also known as Pavilion L on Denver Health's main campus, which is also the only location open seven days a week. There is a second location on the main campus in the pharmacy in Pavilion G and the remaining six locations are located at our Family Health Center Pharmacy locations around Denver. People can access the drop bins anytime the pharmacies are open.

Watch this short video to see how easy it is to drop off unwanted, expired and unused medications at Denver Health's eight Medication Take Back Bin locations.
"It is important to remove unwanted or expired medications from your home to dispose of them in an environmentally safe way, along with reducing the likelihood of drug abuse or misuse," said Denver Health manager of ambulatory pharmacy services Kurt Henke. The bins first went in at Denver Health in 2016, as Henke explained in this Washington Post article. He advises anyone dropping off prescription drugs that are no longer being used to cross out any personal information on the outside of the pill containers before placing them in the bin. Pharmacy team members will destroy all medications placed in the bin in a safe way that does not negatively affect the environment.

"Denver Health is excited to offer this service to the community," Henke said.

Old Medications You Can Flush

While the Medication Take Back Bins are the preferred way to safely dispose of old medications, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recognizes that sometimes that is not the best option and that there are certain drugs that should be disposed of more quickly, because of their higher potential for abuse and misuse. The FDA has compiled this list of drugs that are safe to flush down the toilet, which it maintains will have a minimal impact on the environment.

Find out more about safe drug disposal here, which includes information on how some drugs can safely be disposed of in the trash as an alternative as well.

Denver Health's Center for Addiction Medicine can help those who are battling drug abuse or prescription drug addiction issues.

For emergencies related to drug abuse or drug poisoning, contact 911 immediately or the Rocky Mountain Poison and Drug Safety Poison Help Line at 1-800-222-1222.