National Prescription Take Back

Spring Take Back Day

April 24th,

Learn More!

The Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, Department of Health, and TN Together are teaming up to encourage participation in the upcoming National Drug Take Back Day on April 24. 

Too often, unused prescription drugs find their way into the wrong hands. That’s dangerous and often tragic. That’s why it was great to see thousands of folks from across the country clean out their medicine cabinets and turn in – safely and anonymously – a record amount of prescription drugs.

The National Prescription Drug Take Back Day aims to provide a safe, convenient, and responsible means of disposing of prescription drugs, while also educating the general public about the potential for abuse of medications.

"According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as of June 2020, 13% of Americans reported starting or increasing substance use as a way of coping with stress or emotions related to COVID-19. I don't think there's a better time than now to dispose of your medication if it is no longer needed or expired. If your medication does not fall into those categories, please pick up an at home lock box to keep them in a safe place. You can find these in store, online or at your local coalition."

Count It! Lock It! Drop It!®

Count it

Make it a goal to count your pills once every two weeks. This will prevent theft and help ensure medications are taken properly.

Lock it

Lock up your medications and store them in a secure place that others would not think to look. 

Drop it

Drop off your unused or expired medications for proper disposal at drop boxes located in participating law enforcement offices or pharmacies.

Accepted Items

  • Liquid medications (in leak-proof containers)
  • Medicated ointment, lotions, or drops
  • Pills in any packaging (glass bottles, plastic containers, plastic bags, etc.)
  • Over-the-counter medications Liquid medications (in leak-proof containers)
  • Pet medications

Prohibited Items

  • Blood sugar equipment
  • Sharps/needles*
  • Illegal drugs & narcotics (police will accept these items if placed in the container)
  • Thermometers*
  • IV bags
  • Bloody or infectious waste
  • Personal care products (shampoo, lotions, etc) safe At-Home Disposal

Home Disposal Methods

Deterra is on a mission to prevent drug abuse and protect our environment through safe, permanent disposal of unused prescription and over the counter medications. The Deterra Drug Deactivation and Disposal System is an easy-to-use drug disposal system can be used at home or in a clinical setting to safely destroy unused or expired medications, making them unavailable for misuse and safe for disposal in the normal trash.

DisposeRx, Inc., a North Carolina-based company, is dedicated to decreasing the risks of drug diversion, overdoses, accidental poisonings and antibiotic resistance by facilitating medication management behavior change and eradicating the misuse of leftover medications. DisposeRx’s patented drug disposal packets and education programs are currently available at almost 60% of retail pharmacies and through 90% of the wholesale pharmacy and medical distributors across the nation.

Follow The Campaign!

"I Take Back Because..."

You probably already know it – take back events are a great way to make our homes and our communities safer by removing prescription drugs that could potentially be misused. Pull out your phone and shoot a short message: “I take back because …”

 Send us your videos (via email to, and we’ll use them on social media and on When it comes to the actual take back day on April 24, don’t forget to tag us in your posts and use #ResilienTN 

Follow Along on Social Media