There are twelve industry stewardship organizations in Manitoba that provide programs and financial support for the recycling of their products after they have been used up. Manitoba requires these industries to be responsible for the ‘end of life’ disposal costs.
The Health Products Stewardship Association (HPSA) is the organization responsible for the safe collection and disposal of consumer health products.
Manitoba passed the regulation requiring this program in 2011.
Participating pharmacies have been accepting old or unused prescription medications, over the counter medications and supplements for almost 10 years.
All the pharmacies in Flin Flon are participating.
The program is very easy to access. Medications and supplements that are old or not needed can simply be dropped off at any pharmacy even if they were not purchased there.
It is best to return items with as little packaging as possible.
It is important for safety to remove old or unused medications from homes. This prevents accidental poisonings, or medications being used for non-medical purposes.
The HPSA program has recently expanded to provide sharps containers for anyone who needs one. The containers can be picked up from pharmacies. People put the sharps in the container and return them to the pharmacy.
All sharps must be in the containers before they are brought to the pharmacy.
Pharmacies collect and ship these items for safe disposal. The costs are covered by the HPSA.
The Primary Health Care Centre in Flin Flon also accepts sharps in a closed container. It can be a container designed for sharps or any kind of closed container like a pop bottle with a lid.
Sharps should not be put in recycling bins or sent to the Recycling Centre.