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Published on Friday, January 6, 2017

Statewide pharmaceutical take-back program proposed

Rep. Peterson (D – Edmonds) has dropped HB 1047 to prevent the abuse and misuse of pharmaceuticals. The goal of the legislation is to provide a way to dispose of old medicines in order to prevent addiction, poisonings, and pollution. Supporters of the bill cite the epidemic of prescription opioid abuse and the related heroin epidemic as reasons for creating the program.

The proposed program would create a “take-back system” which would allow for the safe collection and disposal of unused, unwanted, and expired medicines. It would be the responsibility of drug manufactures are required to create and maintain the program with oversight from the state Department of Health. The bill also requires the program to develop an outreach campaign to inform the public of how to properly store and dispose of drugs.

The bill would also not preempt local pharmaceutical programs that are already working up to the standard set in the bill. AWC is working with a consortium of stakeholders supporting this legislation.