Walmart offers new safe disposal option for prescription medication

Posted at 5:22 PM, Jan 19, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-19 19:22:31-05

Studies show many abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends. To combat that, a retail pharmacy giant has rolled out a new and fascinating way to safely dispose of unused or unwanted medication.

When it comes to unwanted, unneeded or expired prescription drugs, safe keeping and safe disposal are a must.

“We always say, treat it like money or gold because to a lot of people, they are money and gold,” said Rob Stevenson, Executive Director of Drug Free Idaho.

Experts say those forgotten medications in the bathroom cabinet are highly susceptible to misuse and abuse.

“Having that stuff around your house is a temptation for many,” Stevenson said. “So you want to eliminate that temptation.

Secure drop-off boxes are available at police stations across the Treasure Valley, no questions asked.

Now, Walmart pharmacies are offering a free kit, called DisposeRx, that allows patients to safely dispose of their unwanted pills.

“Once a patient is done with their medication, they’ll simply dump the contents of the DisposeRx packet into their pill bottle with warm water and shake it for about 30 seconds,” said Erin Hulliberger, Walmart Spokesperson. “And, according to DisposeRx, that will create a gel that is both nonconvertible and biodegradable and can therefore be disposed of right at home in their trash can.”

Dispose Rx will cone with new painkiller prescriptions filled at Walmart and Sam’s Club — close to 5,000 pharmacies around the country.

The retail giant is the first national pharmacy to offer the solution free to patients.

Experts say leftover prescription pills, like Oxycodone and Hydrocodone, are at the center of the drug epidemic.

In fact, opioid overdoses killed more than 42,000 Americans in 2016 — the deadliest year on record, according to the National Center for Health Statistics.