Clean Out Your Medicine Cabinet!
Do you have expired, unused or unwanted prescription drugs? Dispose of them for free at one of Snohomish County's Drug Take-Back program 40 locations.
Since 2004, unintentional poisoning deaths outpaced motor vehicle crashes as the number one cause of unintentional injury deaths in Snohomish County. Most (80%) of unintentional poisoning deaths are due to opioids (OxyContin, Vicodin, etc.), and in particular, at least one prescription opioid was present in 63% of these deaths. On average 3.3 drugs were reported in prescription opioid deaths. The combinations can also include over-the-counter opioids.
Three in five teens say prescription pain relievers are easy to get from parents’ medicine cabinets. Over half of prescription drug abusers get the medicines from a friend or relative.
Misused prescription drugs are the illicit drugs of choice among 12- and 13-year olds. Almost 11% of 10th graders reported using pain relievers to get high in the past 30 days. For the first time among teens, there are as many new abusers of prescription drugs as marijuana abusers.
Middle-age adults (35-54 years) had the highest death rate from unintentional poisonings from 2005 through 2007. However, older adults (65+) were the most likely to be hospitalized. Young adults (18-29 years) accounted for two-thirds of all admissions to substance abuse treatment centers for prescription pain reliever abuse in 2007.
The Snohomish County Partnership for Secure Medicine Disposal coordinates the Drug Take-Back Program in our county. Partnership members include the Snohomish Health District, Snohomish County, the Snohomish County Sheriff’s office, the Snohomish Regional Drug and Gang Task Force, the Washington State Patrol, and all local law enforcement agencies.
The Partnership addresses growing community concern about abuse, accidental poisonings, overdoses and contamination of water from unwanted medications. The partners agree that long-term success is dependent on sustainable funding for a state-wide program, similar to programs in other countries that are funded by pharmaceutical manufacturers. The Partnership strongly supports legislation in Washington state which was considered but defeated last year. The proposed bill would have created a statewide medicine take-back program that would require drug manufacturers to pay for the disposal of unused drugs. Learn more at www.takebackyourmeds.org/about.
All law enforcement locations in the county take back all unwanted medicines, including controlled substances on a Monday-through-Friday schedule. This includes the NCIS office at Naval Station Everett for those with access, Washington State Patrol office in Marysville, and tribal police stations on the Tulalip and Stillaguamish reservations. Lynnwood Police Department is open seven days a week. In addition to two Group Health sites, many Bartell drugstores in Snohomish County also currently take back unwanted medicines. All sites will accept unwanted vitamins, pet medications, over-the-counter medications, inhalers, and unopened EpiPens. Only law enforcement locations can handle the controlled substances. Site locations and times are available at 425.388.3199 or at www.takebackyourmeds.org.
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Main: 425-388-3393 or 1-800-562-4367, TTY