Unwanted Medications

Cheltenham Township officials invite residents to drop off unwanted medications at the Cheltenham Police Station, open from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. seven days a week, at 8230 Old York Road in Elkins Park. Cheltenham is one of dozens of communities participating in the Montgomery County District Attorney Prescription Drug Disposal Program.

Years ago, doctors used to advise people to flush unneeded medications down the toilet. However, experts now agree that medicines that are flushed or poured down the drain can end up polluting our waters and contaminating our food and water supplies.  Because wastewater treatment plants are not designed to remove medicines, these chemicals may be discharged to rivers and bays. Even at very low levels, medicines in the environment hurt aquatic life.

            Throwing them out with the trash is also dangerous. Drugs are still chemically active in the trash, even if mixed with kitty litter or coffee grounds. Several studies have shown that medicines in a landfill can be released into the local environment.

            The best and safest option for disposing of unwanted medications is to drop them off at designated disposal sites like the Cheltenham Township Police Station. 

Environmental Advisory Council
Streamkeeper Report