Safe Disposal of Controlled Substances

DEA National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has scheduled another National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day on Saturday, September 26, 2015 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. This is a great opportunity to safely and properly dispose of unwanted or unused prescription drugs and help reduce the risk of diversion and abuse and the dangerous accumulation of unused prescription drugs in homes. For more information, or to find a collection site near you, visit

Safe Disposal of Unused Controlled Substances By Consumers
(December 2014 Announcement)

The September 9, 2014 Federal Register contains a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Final Rule regarding Disposal of Controlled Substances. The DEA has revised its regulations to expand the options available to collect controlled substances from ultimate users for purpose of disposal, including: Take-back events, mail-back programs, and collection receptacle locations. The effective date of the DEA rule is October 9, 2014.

Pursuant to Public Health Law Article 33, Section 3343-b, the Department of Health (DOH) is working to update its regulations to allow for a program for the safe disposal of unused controlled substances by consumers in accordance with federal law. While manufacturers, distributors, reverse distributors, narcotic treatment programs, hospitals/clinics with an on-site pharmacy and retail pharmacies may apply to the DEA for registration as a "Collector", until such time as the corresponding State regulations are adopted, mail-back programs and collection receptacle locations for purposes of controlled substance disposal is not yet permissible in New York State.

Consumers may continue to safely dispose of unused controlled substances at DOH approved 'Medication Collection Events' and at law enforcement agencies participating in the DOH administered 'New York State Medication Drop Box Program'.