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Proper Disposal of
Unwanted Medicine

Unwanted Medicine

Flushing medication down the toilet threatens human health and the environment. You should dispose of unwanted medication in your household trash by following these steps.

  • Keep the medicine in its original container. The labels may contain safety information and the caps are typically child proof. Leaving the content information clearly visible, cover the patient's name with a permanent marker.
  • Modify the medicines to discourage consumption. For solids, such as pills or capsules, add a small amount of water to the bottle to at least partially dissolve them. For liquid medicines, add enough table salt, flour or powdered spice (such as turmeric or mustard) to make a pungent, unsightly mixture that discourages anyone from taking it.
  • Seal and conceal. Tape the container's lid shut with packing or duct tape. Place it in a bag or container such as an empty yogurt or margarine tub to ensure that the contents cannot be seen.
  • Discard the container in your garbage can. Do not place it in the recycling bin.

For more detailed instructions, see the "Proper Disposal of Unwanted Medicine" fact sheet.

CVS/PharmacyWalgreens Pharmacy and Rite Aid Pharmacy do not accept customer medications for disposal. They do, however, offer the TakeAway Environmental Return Program for purchase. Customers can buy a self-address envelope from the pharmacies for $3.99, fill with their unused/unwanted medications (EXCLUDING CONTROLLED MEDICATIONS) and mail them for secure and safe disposal. Call CVS/Pharmacy at 1-888-607-4287, Walgreens at 1-800-925-4733 or Rite-Aid at 1-800-748-3243 for more information.

Some local governments may also offer one-day take-back programs through their public safety or solid waste departments. Check with your local government to see if any events are scheduled.

S.C. residents can review this listing for opportunities to immediately dispose of unwanted medications.  These locations offer free, environmentally-safe disposal and may serve as an additional option to biannual DEA drug take back days. If your area is not included in this list, check back often for updates, as we will include new locations throughout the state as they are identified.

Related Topics

County

Location

Address

Contact #

Hours

Fairfield Fairfield Co Sheriff's Department 350 Columbia Rd, Winnsboro 803-635-4141 Mon-Fri 8:30-5:00
Florence Florence County Sheriff's Department 6719 Friendfield Rd, Effingham 843-665-2121 Mon-Fri 8-5
Greenville Greenville County Sheriff & Greenville City Police Department 4 McGee St, Greenville 864-271-5333 24/7
Horry Horry County Police Department ML Brown Public Safety Building 2560 North Main St, Conway 843-915-5350 Mon-Fri 8-5
Horry Myrtle Beach Police Department 1101 North Oak St, Myrtle Beach 843-918-1382 24/7
Horry North Myrtle Beach Public Safety 1015 Second Ave South North Myrtle Beach 843-280-5511 24/7
Lancaster Lancaster Co Sheriff's Department 1520 Pageland Hwy, Lancaster 803-283-3388 24/7
Lancaster Lancaster Co -Indian Land Sub 8290 Charlotte Hwy, Indian Land 803-283-3388 call to have officer meet you
Lexington Lexington County Sheriff's Department 521 Gibson Rd main lobby, Lexington 803-785-8230 24/7
Richland Richland County Sheriff's Department 5623 Two Notch Rd, Columbia 803-573-3000 24/7
Richland Richland County Region 1 2615-B Lower Richland Blvd by Lower Richland High School, Cola 803-576-1470 9-11 Mondays & Wednesdays
Richland Richland County Region 2 7201 Two Notch Rd Cola
in Columbia Mall upper level by Sears
803-576-3444 9-11 Mondays & Wednesdays
Richland Richland County Region 3 6429 Bishop Ave Cola 803-576-2215 9-11 Mondays & Wednesdays
Richland Richland County Region 4 1019 Beatty Rd Cola 803-576-1455 9-11 Mondays & Wednesdays
Richland Richland County Region 7 1405 Screaming Eagle Blvd, Cola 803-576-1420 9-11 Mondays & Wednesdays
Sumter Sumter Co Sheriff's Office 1285 North Main St, Sumter 803-436-2450 8:30-5:00
Sumter Sumter Police Department 107 E Hampton St, Sumter 803-436-2700 8:30-5:00 Mon-Fri
Union Union County Sheriff's Department 220 W Main St, Union 864-429-1612 Mon-Fri 8-5
York York County Sheriff's Department 1675-2A York Hwy (Moss Justice Center) 803-628-3059 24/7
York Clover Police Department 112 Bethel St, Clover 803-222-9494 24/7
York Fort Mill Police Department 111 Academy St, Fort Mill 803-547-2022 24/7
York Tega Cay Police Department 7705 Tega Cay Dr, Tega Cay 803-548-0340 24/7
York Rock Hill Police Department 120 E Black St, Rock Hill 803-329-7282 24/7
York Winthrop Police Department 526 Myrtle Dr, Rock Hill 803-323-3333 24/7
York York Police Department 12 N Roosevelt St, York 803-684-3886 24/7