The Department of Health has set up numerous free drop-off sites and a free mail-back program for unwanted opioids or other prescription drugs.

Find a collection location or request a mail-back envelope.

The Drug Enforcement Association (DEA) sponsors a free national Drug Take-Back day. For additional information, and to find a location near you, visit. https://takebackday.dea.gov

VT Dept. of Health information on year-round prescription drug disposal https://www.healthvermont.gov/alcohol-drugs/services/prescription-drug-disposal

  • Pharmaceuticals and Personal Care Products as Pollutants (PPCPs) refers, in general, to any product used by individuals for personal health or cosmetic reasons or used by agribusiness to enhance growth or health of livestock. PPCPs comprise a diverse collection of thousands of chemical substances, including prescription and over-the-counter therapeutic drugs, veterinary drugs, fragrances, and cosmetics. Studies have shown that pharmaceuticals are present in our nation’s water bodies. Further research suggests that certain drugs may cause ecological harm. The EPA is investigating this topic and developing strategies to help protect the health of both the environment and the public. PPCPs have probably been present in water and the environment for as long as humans have been using them. The drugs that we take are not entirely absorbed by our bodies, and are excreted and passed into wastewater and surface water. With advances in technology that improved the ability to detect and quantify these chemicals, we can now begin to identify what effects, if any, these chemicals have on human and environmental health. In most cases, unwanted prescription medication should be placed in the trash. There are three exceptions:
  • Head lice shampoo – accepted at Household Hazardous Waste Events. No fee for SWAC residents. Chemotherapy drugs – return to pharmacy or cancer clinic.  Anti-neoplastic medicine – return to pharmacy or cancer clinic.

         NOTE: Please do not flush unwanted medication down the drain. It may disrupt your septic system or the water treatment facility New guidelines are now available.

  • Two Communities Hosting Drug DropBox – The Castleton and Fair Haven Police Departments now have a permanent place for residents to safely dispose of unused or unwanted prescription medication. The Rutland Area Prevention Coalition announced Wednesday the installation of two new permanent prescription drug drop boxes. The green MedReturn boxes accept any prescription including narcotics, although neither liquids nor sharps can be accepted, according to a news release. At the Castleton Police Station on Route 30, the MedReturn box can be accessed from 7:00 a.m.- 2:00 a.m., seven days a week.  At the Fair Haven Police Department on North Park Place, the MedReturn box can be accessed from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. This makes four such sites in the county. Two are in Rutland city — one at Rutland Pharmacy and the other at the Rutland County Sheriff’s Department.
  • CVS Pharmacy – Do you have expired or unused prescription medications in your medicine cabinet? You might even have bottles stacked behind other bottles, taking up space and creating danger. Your first instinct may be to toss the old drugs in the trash or flush them down the toilet, but there is a safer way to get rid of your unwanted medications. Find out how to safely dispose of your products here.
  • Walgreens Leads Fight Against Drug Abuse with New Programs to Help Curb Misuse of Medications and the Rise in Overdose DeathsRead more here.