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Posted 11/04/2016
New Disposal Options for Unwanted and Expired Medicines
Harrisburg, PA – Pennsylvanians have more options to dispose of unwanted and expired medicines and pharmaceutical drugs thanks to enactment of HB 1737, part of the opioid epidemic package of bills signed by Gov. Wolf.

“With this new legislation we want to remind PA residents that there are safe ways to dispose of unwanted and expired medicines,” said Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Acting Secretary Patrick McDonnell. “We want to encourage everyone to safely and responsibly dispose of medicines and other pharmaceuticals rather than just flush them down the drain or send them to a landfill.”

The law allows pharmaceuticals delivered to collection events to be incinerated at permitted facilities, instead of solely being disposed of as hazardous waste, and allows collection events conducted by law enforcement, medical facilities, pharmacies, and resource recovery facilities incinerating the pharmaceuticals to be exempt from registering with DEP prior to commencing operations.

“We hope that changing prior disposal restrictions will encourage more collection events to enable people to dispose of expired and unwanted drugs,” said McDonnell.

The Department encourages organizations hosting collection events to contact Pennsylvania’s Department of Drug and Alcohol or the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration for help in publicizing the events and for guidance on disposal options.

For more information on prescription drug disposal please visit the DEP website.