Medical Waste Recycling/Disposal Programs
Disposing of unused medications can be problematic. Getting rid of them down the toilet, drain, or in the garbage is not only illegal, but also harmful to the environment. In order to provide a sound alternative, the Town of Danville is now offering a convenient, no-cost way to dispose of pharmaceuticals.
Between 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Monday – Friday, residents may come to the Danville Police Department, 510 La Gonda Way to dispose of their unused or expired drugs. Regardless of whether they are prescription or non-prescription, all unused or expired drugs must be placed in a sealable plastic bag, then deposited in the Pharmaceutical Disposal Bin located in the Police Department Lobby. Rules behind the drop-off include:
1. All pills must be emptied from their original containers and placed in a resealable plastic bag.
2. Original pill containers should be recycled after removal of all personal information.
3. All liquids are to be kept in their original container and placed inside a resealable plastic bag.
Syringes, lancets or pen needles (Sharps of any kind) will not be accepted. A different program through the Contra Costa County Solid Waste Authority is responsible for those.
For more information on the prescription drop-off, contact the Danville Police Department at 314-3700.
Medical Sharps Recycling
Did you know that improper management of discarded needles and other sharps can pose a health risk to the public and waste workers? For example, discarded needles may expose waste workers to potential needle stick injuries and potential infection when containers break open inside garbage trucks or needles are mistakenly sent to recycling facilities. Janitors and housekeepers also risk injury if loose sharps poke through plastic garbage bags. Used needles can transmit serious diseases, such as HIV and hepatitis.
Allied Waste Services and the Central Contra Costa Solid Waste Authority are concerned about the potential hazards associated with used medical sharps. They have partnered with various municipal organizations to provide safe collection sites for used sharps.
Currently, sharps are being collected at the locations listed below. Thanks to these hosts, used medical sharps, that might otherwise harm solid waste workers and others with needle sticks, will be properly disposed:
- Alamo Sheriff’s Substation – 150 Alamo Plaza, Suite C.
- Lafayette Fire Station – 3338 Mt. Diablo Blvd.
- Moraga Fire Station – 1280 Moraga Way
- Orinda Police Department – 22 Orinda Way
- San Ramon Fire District – 1500 Bollinger Canyon Rd.
- Walnut Creek Fire Station – 1050 Walnut Avenue
- Walnut Creek City Hall – 1666 N. Main St.
You can still take your used sharps and lancets to Rossmoor Medical Center Pharmacy located at 1220 Rossmoor Pkwy in Walnut Creek. For more information, please call (925) 988-7510.
There will be additional locations in other communities soon. You can call 925-906-1801 for updates on the program, or to get information on a sharps mail-back program.
Some very important information you should know:
- Please make sure your sharps are contained are in an authorized sharps container before placing them in the collection receptacle. For more information on containers, check outwww.bd.com/us/diabetes/.
- The hosting organizations listed above are going out of their way to help their communities. Therefore, do not, under any circumstances, leave sharps, medications, or any other products on their property. Doing so could jeopardize the viability of these collection programs that help our residents do the right thing.
- These sharps collection programs are for individuals only. Use by residential care facilities, doctors’ offices, veterinarians, and other commercial generators is not permitted.
Of course the best way to make recycling easy is to stop unwanted paper before it becomes waste. Visit the Bay Area Recycling Outreach Coalition for your free STOP JUNK MAIL KIT.
Recently, a Sustainable Danville Area participant, Nelda Braver forwarded us a posting from planetgreen.com and we couldn’t help but share it with you: