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What Can You Take Back?

What you can bring to a medicine take-back programs.


Properly disposed of the medicines your family use.

Pharmacy and law enforcement take-back programs accept most medicines. However some prescription medicines, like certain pain relievers and stimulants, are controlled substances and can only be returned to law enforcement locations.  Find out what you can bring or find a take-back location near you.

How do I dispose of my sharps or other wastes that are not accepted?
Some medical wastes, like sharps and thermometers, should be properly disposed of using the option that's right for each waste.  For safe disposal of needles and syringes, ask your pharmacist or contact your local Health Department or call 1-800-RECYCLE (1-800-732-9253). For other wastes that are not accepted, click here to find out what you can do.

What you can bring to a medicine take-back program

Yes Substances Icon YES: Items Accepted No Substances Icon NO: Items Not Accepted


Yes Substances Icon Prescription Medicines:

Law enforcement locations
can accept all medicines.

Pharmacies can accept
most medicines except for
controlled substances.



No Substances Icon NO: Pharmacies cannot
accept prescription
medicines that are
controlled substances.

Dispose of these at a
law enforcement
take-back location.


Yes Substances Icon Over-the-counter medicines


No Substances Icon NO: Needles/Lancets/Syringes


Yes Substances Icon Vitamins


No Substances Icon NO: Thermometers


Yes Substances Icon Pet Medicines


No Substances Icon NO: Aerosol cans


Yes Substances Icon Medicated
ointments and lotions


No Substances Icon NO: Empty containers


Yes Substances Icon Inhalers

No Substances Icon NO: Bloody or infectious waste


Yes Substances Icon Liquid medicines in glass or
leak-proof containers (up to 12 oz.)


No Substances Icon NO: Personal care products
(non-medicated shampoo, etc.)

Yes Substances Icon Medicine samples No Substances Icon NO: Hydrogen Peroxide
No Substances Icon NO: Business waste
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