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September 3, 2015

Drug take-back collection set

The spring drug take-back day netted approximately 450 pounds of unwanted and expired medications.

The spring drug take-back day netted approximately 450 pounds of unwanted and expired medications.

Do you have a drawer or medicine cabinet full of pills you no longer use?

Bring them to the University Pharmacy’s drug take-back day, which will be held 9 a.m-2 p.m. Sept. 11 in Nordenberg Hall. The event is open to members of the University community and to the public.

The proper disposal of unused, expired and unwanted medications prevents drug overdoses, illicit use of medications and water pollution.

Justin Saver, a Pitt pharmacy graduate student who is coordinating the collection, said: “Drug abuse has reached epic proportions across the United States. In the Pittsburgh metropolitan area, rates of abuse and overdose have been on the rise in the last few years.”

But he noted that prescription pain pills are not the only medication being abused. He described a recent fad called “pharm parties,” where adolescents and teens who have raided family medicine chests for prescription and non-prescription drugs combine the drugs into a pile. Those in attendance help themselves to the assortment, often without knowing what they are taking, Saver said.

Items that will be accepted at the University Pharmacy collection include prescription medications, nonleaking liquids, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, supplements, EpiPens, injectables, creams, gels, ointments and pet medications.

Items that will not be accepted include needles, syringes, diabetic lancets/test strips, inhalers, IV bags, thermometers and chemotherapy medications.

The event is sponsored by Student Affairs, the Pitt Police, the School of Pharmacy and the Drug Enforcement Administration.

For more information, email


UPMC also is participating in drug take-back day on Sept. 11, but its hours will be 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Among the UPMC collection sites are Falk Pharmacy, Magee lobby, Hillman Cancer Center ground floor atrium, UPMC Presbyterian prescription shop and Children’s Hospital outpatient pharmacy.

Filed under: Feature,Volume 48 Issue 1

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