Medicines/Sharps

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HOW TO PROPERLY DISPOSE OF UNWANTED MEDICINES

Avita Hospital in Ontario and Bucyrus offers 24 hour collection of unwanted and unused medicine. The drug collection receptacle or drop-box is secured, placed in a publicly accessible space and is regularly monitored by employees.

Please check with your local law enforcement to see if they have a drop-box. Until your old medicine is properly disposed, follow the following guidelines:

Keep the medication in its original packing
*Remove all personal information from the packing.
*Use a marker to black out your name and insurance information.

Make the Medicine unusable
*Crush or dissolve pills with a small amount of water.
*Absorb liquid medication with flour, table salt, or another non-toxic substance.
*Wrap blister packs in layers of strong tape.

Secure packaging with strong tape
*Place the package inside a non-transparent container.
*An empty yogurt or margarine container works best.
Place this container in with your household trash.

Helpful Tips
*Purchase only as much as you need.
*Centralize all medications in one location secured from children and pets.
*Store medications at proper temperature and humidity to preserve the quality.
*Say “No” to physician samples if you are not going to take them.
Make sure to check our website for ‘National Prescription Drug Take Back Event.’ Richland County Solid Waste partners with “METRICH.” Events are usually held twice a year.

Medicine and the Environment
• Do not flush the drugs down the toilet because it could containment our water sources.
• Drugs that are thrown in the trash have the potential to leach out the landfill and pollute the soil and groundwater.
• Old medications can also contribute to drug abuse, if they fall into the wrong hands.

WHAT ARE SHARPS?
Sharps include lancets, hypodermic needles, syringes, scalpel blades and broken glass articles (other than household items).

HOW TO DISPOSE OF SHARPS

Use a rigid, leak-proof, puncture-resistant container with a tight fitting lid. Here are some common household container examples: detergent bottles, bleach bottles, two-liter bottles, plastic juice containers and coffee cans (if the lid is securely taped to the can).

*Do not use glass containers because the glass may break and spill the contents.
*Plastic milk jugs make poor sharp containers because the plastic used in these containers is thin and sharps easily can poke through.

ALTERNATIVES FOR DISPOSAL

Call the company or pharmacy where you purchased your medical supplies regarding disposal alternatives. Some have programs to accept sharps containers, free or for a nominal fee, which are then treated and disposed of properly. You can also check with your local health department regarding disposal alternatives.

FOR MORE INFORMATION

For more information about disposal options for home user sharps, please contact your local health department, Ohio EPA District Office, or Ohio EPA’s Division of Solid and Infectious Waste Management Infectious Waste Unit at (614) 644-2621.