Disposing Of Unused Prescription Drugs

Published 05/29 2014 03:33PM

Updated 05/29 2014 06:32PM

When you have unused or old medications, you should never just throw them out or flush them down the toilet. They should properly disposed of.

The Broome County Sheriff's Office has a medication drop box at its administrative office behind SUNY Broome in the Town of Dickinson. Sometimes it is filled up several times a week, or even daily, with residents getting rid of their medications the right way.

Broome County Undersheriff Alex Minor says there are several advantages to disposing of pills and medicated syrups correctly. 

"We ask that you take them out of the container and put them into a plastic baggie, only because it makes it that much easier for us to destroy them," said Minor. "First of all, we're not contaminating any water supply, because many people are sometimes just flushing them down the toilet and you have all kinds of toxic stuff going into the potential water supply."

It also helps make sure loved ones aren't supporting a habit.

"It's keeping these kinds of drugs out of the hands of potential abusers. Many times, we have many cases over the course of the year when families may have a member of their family who has a drug problem. One of the main sources of prescription drugs is out of the medicine cabinet, because we have extras that are lying around," said Minor.

While medications can be dropped off here at the Sheriff's Office Mondays through Fridays from 8 until 5, sharp objects including needles are not accepted.

Several times a year the Sheriff's Office does hold medication drop-offs at locations around the community as well.

If you have a liquid medication you need to dispose of, you should leave that in the bottle. Only pills are to be put in plastic baggies.

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