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Posted by: nomonomo ( )
Date: December 02, 2017 06:28PM

Are there places to donate unused medications? When my wife passed away, she had quite a bit of medicine left, some of it quite expensive. I hate to just (properly) dispose of it if there is a way to make sure it (legitimately) gets into the hands of people who need it.

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Posted by: Lethbridge Reprobate ( )
Date: December 02, 2017 09:31PM

I returned all my wife's to our pharmacy after she passed away.

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Posted by: nevermojohn ( )
Date: December 02, 2017 09:53PM

Legitimately. There is the rub. The medication has left a pharmacy and been in your possession. A pharmacist will not give that to another patient. Organizations are also going to be leery of using prescriptions written for one person for someone else. There are laws and regulations that would not allow this.

I would just do what Lethbridge Reprobate advises.

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Posted by: saucie ( )
Date: December 02, 2017 09:55PM

Do what Lethbridge Reprobate did.

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Posted by: Greyfort ( )
Date: December 02, 2017 10:00PM

We brought all of my Dad's left-over medication to the drug store. They know how to dispose of it safely.

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Posted by: Ohdeargoodness nli ( )
Date: December 02, 2017 10:34PM

Some NGO's may accept it, if it's things their docs can use (pain killers, blood pressure meds, antibiotics). Hope this helps.

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Posted by: girlawakened ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 01:24PM

I work for a local nonprofit that offers hospice to the homeless in Salt Lake City and we've had many people drop off their unused medications for our residents. While the gesture is pure, the legal issues are too messy.

The best thing to do is drop them off at your local police/fire station or a hospital for disposal.

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Posted by: slskipper ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 12:05AM

Many police stations have drug disposal facilities.

As far as NGO's, don't be surprised if they say no. There are strict regulations in most countries that even NGO's must comply with. Good intentions do not override public health damage from mistakes in dispensing. It's just too hard to confidently identify a bottle of pills. Much better to give money to the NGO so they can purchase drugs according to the country's regulations.

As for pharmacies, the law specifically forbids reselling returned medications. They are entirely at liberty to take them off your hands and do with them what they will, whether disposing or chucking them in the trash. They can even refund your money if they want. That is a business decision. They probably won't refund any money on unused pills because that way they lose money, but they can if they want.

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Posted by: catnip ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 12:24AM

You just dump the pills into this mailbox-type thing, but keep the container.

It seems like it should be possible to pass them along to someone who needs them, but it isn't, and I'm sure there are dozens of good reasons why. But in a country like ours, where not everyone has access to the medicine they need (while others of us are lucky enough to have good insurance), it seems such a shame to throw it out.

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Posted by: anon2day ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 12:29AM

My dr asked me to return mine to their office if I didn't use it, so I planned on doing that next week

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 12/03/2017 12:30AM by anon2day.

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Posted by: not for this ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 04:30PM

This may sound odd.

Ask a local veterinarian if he can use it.

Many people meds are used for animals and I don't think there are as many rules.

I donated some rather expensive cancer meds that the vet used to treat a dog whose owner could not afford the meds.

This was over 15 years ago and that vet is retired. Laws change. But may be worth a shot.

May depend on the meds too.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 07:42PM

I've wondered about that. My cat is on very expensive insulin. Eventually when he dies, I would love to donate the leftover insulin and syringes to the local animal shelter.

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Posted by: desertman ( )
Date: December 03, 2017 04:33PM

To my understanding NO! A legal officiator has to declare you man, or husband, and wife

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Posted by: Tyson Dunn (not logged in) ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 06:32PM

When I served in the France Paris Mission in the early '90s, a service activity we performed in Versailles for the Œuvres Hospitalières de l'Ordre de Malte was to triage donated medications from individuals, nursing homes, and hospitals.

Liquid medicines, opened salves, and non-medical items were tossed. Glasses were saved. If more than half a blister pack was intact (for example 5 unused pills out of 10), the medication was to be saved. Otherwise, it was thrown away. Expired medication was thrown out, and unexpired medication was sorted according to remaining usefulness, so as to be distributed within the country, or to Eastern Europe, or beyond, depending on how long it would last.

On the sadder side, I remember sorting creams that dated from before World War I.


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Posted by: desertman ( )
Date: December 04, 2017 11:01PM

When DW died in October Hospice gave us explicit detailed instructions on the disposal for any left over medications.I believe that this is mandated under current law

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