Monday, April 16, 2012

What do you do with your extra medications?

People with MS and other chronic diseases often have medicine cabinents full of unused medications. These drugs may be dangerous in the wrong hands (or toxic to the environment), and there aren't always easy ways to dispose of them. To help, several police departments are collecting unwanted medications on National Take Back Day - Saturday April 28. To see where you can drop off your old drugs, check out this website.

How does this relate to advocacy you wonder? Well, several states have tried to create stronger "take back" systems. In particular, California set up a robust sharps disposal system that places some responsibility for the disposal of sharps on pharmaceutical equipment manufacturers. In 2011, legislation was introduced in Washington's legislature to create a similar system. We monitored the bill, though we didn't take an official stand on it as we were concerned about adding additional costs onto consumers. I predict it's something that will likely to come up again in the future.

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