Beaverton Committee on Aging: Disposing of Unused Medication

By Jessica Brzuskiewiczcity-of-beaverton-logo

What can we do with our expired, or unused medications? Proper disposal of medications helps keep them from entering the environment through wastewater or run off, and helps keep family, friends, or neighbors safe by preventing diversion.

The Beaverton Police Department has a secure drop box for prescriptions and over-the-counter medications available at 4755 SW Griffith Drive. The box is accessible to individuals Monday and Friday from 7:00 am to 5:30 pm and Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, 7:00 am to 7:00 pm.

Acceptable items: Prescription medications and samples, all over the counter medications, vitamins, pet medications, medicated ointments and liquid medication in leak proof containers. Prescription pills should be out of original containers.

Unacceptable items: Thermometers, sharps, syringes, IV bags, bloody or infectious waste, hydrogen peroxide, aerosol cans, inhalers, EpiPens and iodine.

If you cannot make it to the secure drop box, and want to dispose of your medication at home the following tips from the Beaverton Police Department can help:

  • Pills and capsules: Add a small amount of water to them so they are not usable. Then disperse them throughout your garbage.
  • Liquids: Add an absorbent material, such as flour or kitty litter, recap the bottle, and put it in the garbage.

Household sharps and syringes have special disposal requirements and cannot be thrown in the trash.

What if I have household sharps, or syringes to dispose of?

You cannot dispose of syringes and other medical sharps in the garbage because it’s illegal in Oregon. The law also requires that medical sharps be disposed of in approved sharps containers, available at many local pharmacies, medical supply stores and Metro’s hazardous waste facilities. Metro runs a container exchange program for residents and households in Washington County.

For a $5 fee per container, they will take your approved sharps disposal containers and destroy them per regulations. Call their information hotline at (503)234-3000 between 8:30 am and 5:00 pm Monday through Saturday.

For information about the Beaverton Committee on Aging, contact jbrooks@beavertonoregon.gov.