Monday, September 27, 2010

National "Take-Back Drug" Event In Redmond A Big Success!

Redmond Police Lobby Take-Back 
You may notice unwanted pharmaceuticals accumulating in your cabinet with "no place to go".   Recently, the State Attorney General said we are not to flush pharmaceuticals.  Yet, throwing them in the trash contaminates ground water; and they are a drug abuser's delight.   So how do we safely dispose of our unwanted pharmaceuticals?  The City of Redmond is working hard on this! 

Last Saturday, City Police participated  in a National "Take Back Drug" program with the Drug Enforcement Agency.  According to the two police officers on duty in the Public Safety Building Lobby the event was a success; over 100 citizens dropped off their unwanted pharmaceuticals.  When I visited a half hour before closing, the police pointed to a large brown box (18 inches X 48 inches) completely filled with drugs - going to the incinerator.

The National Take Back Program is a once a year event.   But, other local organizations will take-back your drugs.   The Sammamish Police Department has a lock-box and accepts controlled drugs.  Group Health - Redmond (425-882-6150) and Bartell Drug - Bridal Trails (425-881-5544) take-back all but controlled drugs.  A Group Health -Redmond pharmacist recommended mixing the controlled drugs with water and coffee grounds. 

Sherry Grindeland, spokesperson for Evergreen (Public) Hospital says Evergreen  won't take-back drugs for the community, writing: 
"Hospitals have to follow certain protocols when they discard outdated drugs. We are required by law to have them destroyed and it is quite expensive. (I didn't ask exact amount.) We give them to a company that specializes in this and they're incinerated at extremely high temperatures.

The pharmacists I talked to said the best way to dispose of drugs was to mix them with kitty litter --- USED kitty litter - and put them in your household trash. Yuk!"  7/23
Councilmember Hank Myers reported that drug disposal recommendations by the FDA, pharmaceutical industry, and attorney general conflict with each other and the county.  Myers is Chair of the Council Safety Committee and is working with County Councilmember Kathy Lambert and Police Chief Gibson to organize disposal during quarterly recycling events.

Councilmember Margeson has been spearheading  take-back efforts in the region for over 1.5 years.

Reported By Bob Yoder
iPhone Photo By Yoder

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