MedSafe® Medication Collection Stations have been installed in the
lobbies of Methodist Hospital and Methodist Hospital Union County as a
community service. The stations provide a safe and secure way for individuals
to dispose of unwanted, unused and expired medications.
The blue stainless steel collection receptacles have an inner liner that
can be removed by a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) approved collector
when it is filled and returned for proper disposal via incineration, rendering
the pharmaceuticals non-retrievable. The Henderson Regional Hospital Foundation
(HRHF) is underwriting the MedSafe® project.
“Until recently, there has not been a good way to dispose of prescription
medications,” said Brent Bridges, Pharm D, MHA, Director of Pharmacy
at Methodist Hospital. “The DEA’s guidance recommended mixing
left over medications with coffee grounds or kitty litter and placing
the mixture in a coffee can, taping up the lid and disposing in the garbage.
This was impractical at best and the EPA has long banned flushing medications
via sewer systems.”
With limited options, individuals have been keeping old, expired or otherwise
dangerous medications inside their homes. These medications often become
the target of illicit use by family or friends leading to harm and, in
some cases, death.
“This issue became such a problem that local law enforcement began
holding ‘take back’ events and eventually serving as community
take back centers to decrease the incidence of prescription related diversion,”
said Bridges. “Pharmacies were, until recently, prohibited from
receiving medications from the public. This changed last year when the
DEA allowed pharmacies such as Methodist Hospital Rx Services to register
as a medication take back facility. We now have procedures in place to
safely and securely receive medications that the public drops off in a
MedSafe® Medication Collection Station. The organization facilitates
the delivery of these items to a destruction vendor.”
Methodist Hospital and the HRHF believe that participating in this community
service is a worthy effort and are confident that this process will help
ensure a safe, legal and environmentally friendly way to dispose of unused
Using the collection station is as easy as using a mailbox. Instructions
are posted on the receptacle at each collection station.
For questions regarding this press release, please contact Brandi L. Schwartz
at 270-831-7836 or