Palo Alto residents have another place to safely dispose of unused, expired or unwanted prescription drugs and over-the-counter medication. A new medication disposal bin has been installed in the lobby of the Palo Alto Police Department, located at 275 Forest Ave. in downtown.
The lobby is open Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. No paperwork or identification is required and there is no fee for disposal, according to a press release from the police department.
Residents can dispose of any types of medication, including prescription drugs that are considered to be "controlled substances" like pain medicine. Loose pills should be put into a Ziploc plastic bag. Those already in blister packaging don't need to be removed from the packaging and can be deposited directly into the bin. Liquid medication and ointments can also be deposited directly into the bin.
Syringes, needles and and other skin-puncturing devices cannot be disposed of at this location, police said.
Empty medication bottles can go into curbside recycling containers.
Other medication disposal bins located in Palo Alto include:
● Regional Water Quality Control Plant, at 2501 Embarcadero Road (includes accommodations for disposing of sharps waste and needles)
● Walgreens, at 300 University Ave. (Go to the pharmacy counter)
● Palo Alto Medical Foundation, at 795 El Camino Real (Go to the pharmacy counter)
The disposal bin was installed earlier this fall as part of a regional effort with the Santa Clara Valley Water District, the California Product Stewardship Council, the City of San Jose, the County of Santa Clara, and the City of Palo Alto as part of the "Don't Rush to Flush" campaign. The campaign, which launched in 2013, encourages residents to stop flushing unwanted medication so as to protect water quality and public health.
For more information, visit dontrushtoflush.org.