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Unused medication to be collected Saturday

The Maui News

Officials will be collecting prescription medications for safe disposal at the Wailuku Police Station from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.

The state departments of the Attorney General and Public Safety are coordinating the prescription drug takebacks with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and other law enforcement agencies on Oahu, Maui and Hawaii island. This year’s takeback event will be conducted as a drive-thru to follow physical distancing protocols. 

Participants can bring expired or unused prescription medications in disposable bags to the drop-off locations. They do not have to remove labels or take the pills out of their containers. 

The service is free and anonymous, with no questions asked. Tablets, capsules, liquids and other forms of medication will be accepted. New or used syringes will not be accepted.

Those who cannot participate in the drive-thru events on Saturday can take their medications to dropbox locations nearby. For locations in all four counties, visit hawaiiopioid.org/drug-take-back/.

Unused or expired medicine should be disposed of properly when no longer needed, as they may lose their effectiveness after the expiration date, the state said in a news release Thursday. Improper use of prescription drugs can be as dangerous as illegal drug use. Having unused or expired medicine at home can also increase the risk of accidental poisoining, especially in households with children or elderly. Some people may mistake one type of medicine for another, while children may mistake it for candy. 

Expired medicine also should not be thrown in the trash or flushed down the toilet. Proper disposal helps reduce the risk of prescription drugs entering the human water supply or potentially harming aquatic life. 

For more information, visit dea.gov.

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