The public is encouraged to dispose of expired medicines safely | News, Sports, Jobs

The Maui News

The public is encouraged to turn in their unused or expired medication for safe, anonymous disposal during the National Take-Back Initiative program.

The Department of the Attorney General and the Department of Public Safety’s Narcotics Enforcement Division, in cooperation with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and other law enforcement agencies, operate collection sites on Oahu, Maui, Kauai and the island of Hawaii Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

This is the second and final redemption for 2022. This service is free and anonymous – no questions asked. All forms of medication are accepted.

The April event resulted in the collection and disposal of 4,000 pounds of unused and expired prescriptions for the DEA District of Hawaii, which includes Guam. A total of £60,000 has been raised since 2010, according to a press release.

Most NTBI locations are run as drive-thrus.

Labels do not need to be removed and pills do not need to be removed from containers. Just toss them in a disposable bag and drop them off at the drive-thru locations.

Syringes are not accepted. Vaping devices with batteries removed are accepted.

“The National Take Back Initiative began as a way to properly dispose of potentially hazardous medications to help keep our ohana and our environment safe.” said Victor Vazquez, deputy special agent for the US Drug Enforcement Administration, Honolulu District Office.

So said Hawaii Attorney General Holly T. Shikada “Safe storage and disposal are ways we help prevent misuse and accidental overdose of prescription drugs.”

Nationwide, two-thirds of teens who have abused painkillers say they got them from family and friends, including medicine chests, Shikada said.

“Let’s work together to protect our young people and community.” She added.

Unused or expired medicines should be disposed of properly when they are no longer needed for what they were prescribed for:

• Medicines can lose their effectiveness after the expiration date.

• Improper use of prescription drugs can be just as dangerous as using illegal drugs.

• Having unused or expired medicines at home increases the risk of accidental poisoning.

• Households with children or the elderly are particularly vulnerable to this hazard.

• People can confuse one type of medicine with another; or children may mistake medicine for sweets.

• Medicines should not be thrown in the trash or flushed down the toilet. Proper disposal reduces the risk of prescription drugs entering human water supplies or potentially harming aquatic life. Visit for more information.

A list of collection points can be found at

For those unable to participate in the National Take Back Initiative, a list of drug return boxes is available at

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