KILAUEA — North Shore Pharmacy is collecting expired and unwanted prescription drugs.
The pharmacy has been collecting medication that is outdated or no longer needed for about a month.
The collection is part of a pilot program, through which the Kilauea-based pharmacy has partnered with Sharp’s Compliance Inc., a medical waste management company based in Texas, said Sheree Latif, owner of Northshore Pharmacy.
Latif is offering the program to the public because she wants to provide Kauai residents with another safe way to dispose of medication.
“Only the police department and pharmacies are allowed to handle controlled substances,” she said.
There are many dangers of keeping expired and unwanted prescription drugs on hand, Latif added.
“There’s the threat of accidental poisoning, theft, or of them ending up in the garbage, where animals can get into it,” she said.
Flushing the medication down the toilet isn’t an answer because the chemicals end up in the water, Latif said.
“Let’s clean up the island,” she said.
North Shore Pharmacy will be collecting expired and unwanted medication during their normal business hours — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays. The pharmacy is closed on Sundays and from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. for lunch through the week.
Only tablets and capsules are accepted. Liquid medicine and paraphernalia, like syringes, cannot be collected. The prescription drugs will then be shipped to Texas to be destroyed.