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Washington’s safe medication return program gets underway

wa state dept of health, wa state deptartment of health, washington state department of health, wa state dept of health press release,The Washington Department of Public Health has launched the Safe Medication Return Program, a pioneering effort aimed at reducing medication misuse, abuse, and poisonings.

This program creates a unified, statewide, medication return program that will give Washington residents free, convenient, and environmentally responsible options for disposing of unwanted medication. Physical drop boxes are available. People may also request free mail-back envelopes so they don’t need to leave their homes to participate.

Auburn Area Community kiosk drop-off sites

Auburn Police Department
340 East Main Street
Auburn, WA 98002
(253) 931-3080
Open 23-hours
HealthPoint Auburn North
923 Auburn Way North
Auburn, WA 98002
(253) 351-3900
M-F 8:30 AM – 5:30 PM
Algona Police Department
402 Warde Street
Algona, WA 98001
(253) 833-2743
Pacific Police Department
133 3rd Avenue Southeast
Pacific, WA 98047
(253) 929-1130

People may return most medications. That includes over-the-counter and prescription medications, controlled substance medication, and even household pet medications. Unused and unneeded medications in a household pose a potential risk for poisoning and overdose deaths. Improperly discarded medication also presents an environmental hazard. Flushing medicine down the toilet or throwing it in the trash pollutes water and soil.

Washington is the first state to implement such a program as a result of state law. Funded by drug manufacturers at no cost to taxpayers, the program encourages people to return unwanted and expired medications.

The federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration says about 50 percent of people who misuse prescription medications get the drugs from friends or family members. Many people who become addicted to heroin and other illicit drugs first abuse prescription medications found in the home. Poisonings often occur among young children who take medication not intended for them.

MED-Project is the approved program operator, under the Department of Health’s oversight

The above is a press release from the WA Department of Public Health.  The Auburn Examiner has not independently verified its contents and encourages our readers to personally verify any information they find may be overly biased or questionable. The publication of this press release does not indicate an endorsement of its contents. 

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